An animal rights activist who chased a Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) van carrying over 150 dog carcasses to a burial site alleges that the dogs were poisoned by the municipality. The GHMC, on the other hand, insists that the dog carcasses were collected from across the city and were being taken to the site for disposal, a normal routine.
When Vikaram Chandhak of Greater Hyderabad Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (GHSPCA) found the GHMC vehicle carrying the dog carcasses, he gave a chase and stopped the vehicle at Jaipur colony, LB Nagar only to find that four of the dogs were still alive and were battling for life.
"They were not even buried properly. Most of them looked like they were already decomposing. A few dogs that were still alive were also being ferried in the same vehicle with the dead animals," said Chandak to ToI Reporter Moulika KV.
The bodies were thrown into a pit that was kept ready. "There were about four dogs that were alive. A dog escaped from the pit and was sent to Blue Cross for treatment, but the others died," said Panneru Teja, a volunteer with the animal rights group and an eyewitness to the incident.
In the written police compliant filed at LB Nagar police station by the activists, it was alleged that the dogs were culled at the Animal Birth Control (ABC) Centre in Nagole. The GHMC veterinary officials, however, denied the allegation.
"These are all dogs that were found dead by our staff at different locations in the city. They have to pick up all the dead animals and bring them to Auto Nagar Carcass Utilisation Centre so that the bodies are not left on the streets," said DR Venkateshwara Reddy, Chief Veterinary Officer, GHMC.
When the ToI reporter quizzed the officials about the dogs that were alive but were still being transported to be buried alive at the pit, the officials responded by saying that the GHMC workers were sometimes forced to transport animals together due to demands from the public.
"Sometimes people do not listen to us when we tell them that we will come back for the dogs that are sick. In such situations, our staff are forced to bring all the animals together," he added. But the official appeared to not have an answer as to why the dogs were being buried alive and claimed he was yet to receive a detailed report on the incident.