When Mohanlal left us confused, is he for or against dog culling?
news Wednesday, July 22, 2015 - 05:30
Should 'dangerous' stray dogs be culled? This is the subject of a raging debate in Kerala after the government made its intentions clear that in the light of increasing reports of dog attacks, the government will act against stray dogs. Though many celebrities have commented on the issue, superstar Mohanlal has dived into the debate headfirst with a blog. But the blog has left us confused. Is Mohanlal for or against dog culling or is he just a diplomat in the garb of an actor? Though the actor has questioned government lapses and bad waste management that allowed the population of stray dogs to increase indiscriminately, he also adds an adage about buring a tree which means that it is better to deal with something with an iron hand when it threatens to destroy your own house. The actor is, however, smart enough to camouflage this point with a lot of dog rhetoric before and after. He begins the blog by saying "on planet earth, a dog is a human being's most trusted friend." He devotes many lines to describe the bond of friendship and trust between dogs and human beings. Narrating an incident from the Maharabhata, he says: "When Yudhisthira was going to die, it was a dog by his side and not a human being." The dog praise sort of ends there and then he says that though dogs have a history of friendship, dogs today have become a nightmare for Malayalis. "We're not scared of pet dogs, but those dogs that are roaming our streets and are ripping apart adults and children alike....the situation is so bad that they are scared to walk on the streets as they are scared of the dogs." The actor makes a solemn declaration that he has four pet dogs, but inspite of being a dog lover, when he travels on deserted roads, dogs chasing him has left him shocked many times. He goes on to describe how scary it is when dogs surround one's car, "Sometimes you see 30-40 dogs roaming in the street, their eyes glinting in the reflection of the car's light. We have seen and read about scenes in countries where war has just got over, about vultures and dogs circling dead body." He goes on to ask that if a person sitting inside a car is scared of being bittten, then one can not imagine the agony that people live on the streets go through. The law which forbids government from culling dogs has landed us in this situation where the government also does not know how to deal with the problem, Mohanlal says. He says it is sad that the discussion is about whether to kill stray dogs or not and never about why so many street dogs are roaming the roads. "There was never an issue like this during my childhood. When I asked why this is happening now, it seems that the needle of the reason is pointed at us, because we feed these dogs and the waste that we have created and which has been unscientifically accumulated is feeding these dogs." He describes it like a chain that we dump waste - dogs eat waste, dog population rises, they turn on us and we complain. He then addresses those people who are thinking whether dogs should be killed and says "Even a tree that gives gold has to be burnt down, if it starts growing on your roof". After making this profound statement which could be read as an endorsement to 'deal' with dogs that pose a problem, he then requests people to engage with better waste management.