An effective garbage disposal system will go a long way in controlling the stray dog population in an area.

Govt apathy and mounting garbage Keralas stray dog problem has people worriedImage for representation
news News Thursday, August 25, 2016 - 07:40

The superlative term ‘God’s Own Country’ when applied to Kerala brings to mind a land of bountiful abundance. And this seems true even in the case of stray dogs, with Kerala reportedly hosting a staggering 2.5 lakhs that now literally rule the numerous streets and by-lanes, especially in coastal areas.

Speaking to The News Minute, Christudasi, vice-president of the Karumkulam Panchayat in Thiruvananthapuram, where a 65-year old woman was recently mauled to death by a virulent pack, shared her concerns about the safety of the residents in this coastal belt.

“The panchayat has no choice but to abide by the law. What we now need is an amendment to the same that would allow us to sterilize these dogs, and cull the violent ones as an emergency measure to deal with the alarming rise in the number of dog-bites in this area,” Christudasi opines.

“Being a coastal area, you can find lots of marine waste accumulated at almost every nook and corner. To add to that, the chicks that are being reared in households too significantly contribute to the ever-increasing piles of garbage. Dogs will obviously gather wherever food-remnants are easily available. That is why you can see packs of dogs roaming all over the place,” she says.

According to her, an effective garbage disposal system will go a long way in controlling the stray dog population in the area. To this effect, the panchayat has already earmarked Rs 15 lakhs for the same and is now awaiting clearance by the district committee to get the project going on ground.

79-year old Vijayama Rajan who stays within the Thiruvananthapuram Corporation limits fumes at the apathy shown by the authorities concerned in dealing with this growing menace.

“May be, only when one of the near or dear ones of those in power succumb to a dog-bite, will they actually come to their senses. I wonder just how many more will have to die for them to actually start doing something about this rising danger. It has become so difficult to walk on the streets these days,” she rues.

Kovalam MLA Advocate M Vincent believes that the state government should make it mandatory, that unless local bodies have a working plan in place to deal with garbage disposal in their respective zones, no money should be sanctioned for any other project in the respective ward or panchayat.

“Culling of violent stray dogs have now become a necessity. All strays should be immediately rehabilitated, kept under close watch and the violent ones should then be done away with. The rest can be sterilized,” Vincent feels.

Jasmine Stephen who stays at Kannaanthura near Shangumugham Beach too admits to a steady rise in the number of stray dogs that frequent the area, but points out that there has not been a single case of dog-biting incident in her immediate neighbourhood, to her knowledge.

“We seem to have the tamer versions out here that go about their daily lives, without interfering much in ours. I am unable to recall even a single incident where a dog reportedly bit anyone in our locality. More often than not, it is us humans who harm them, rather than the other way around. But yes, hearing such news from elsewhere is disturbing, to say the least,” Jasmine remarks.


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