A news article in the Hindustan Times dt 10 May 2012 headlined “Dog sterilization to take a hit in New Delhi”says ‘With the trifurcation of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD), the drive to sterilize dogs in the Capital has hit a roadblock in the north and east corporations. The cash-strapped corporations would have to put the drive on hold for a couple of months as there is not a single dog sterlisation facility available within their jurisdiction.’ A Municipal Corporation office is quoted as saying “It would be very difficult for us to control the stray dog menace in east Delhi municipal corporation (EDMC) and north Delhi municipal corporation (NDMC). The dog population could go up by 30-40% in east and north corporations.” The article says “.. there are over 2.8 lakh stray dogs in the Capital and the number could climb beyond three lakhs in a couple of months…”
Now compare this information with what is the reality on the ground:
The Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) had written a letter to the Cheif Minister of Delhi on 25th March, 2011 requesting the governments support for ‘Delhi Government help solicited for stray dog population management, and making Delhi a zero-rabies city’. The letter cited that:
- Since animal birth control is not being resorted to on the requisite large scale, the population of stray dogs in Delhi has not come under control yet.
- The WHO recommends that to achieve success in the program, 70% of stray dogs population must be sterilized and vaccinated with in 2 years. Delhi has a population of 2.62 Lacs stray dogs.
- There are about 78 veterinary hospitals in existence in the Delhi State, run by the Animal Husbandry Department, Government of Delhi.
- Of these, only one, i.e. the Tughlakabad facility, is being used for the Animal Birth Control (ABC) program! 77 veterinary hospitals set up by the Animal Husbandry department of the Government of Delhi, some with large area and facilities are not being utilized for ABC
- Since these facilities exist, and huge amount of public funds are being expended by the Delhi Government in maintaining these hospitals, with staff, salaries, and other overheads, please urgently instruct your Animal Husbandry Department to partner with the Animal Welfare Board of India and the Municipal Corporation of Delhi, for animal birth control in program in Delhi.
- The relevant sections of the SPCA Act were also send
Needless to say no real action on the ABC program has been taken, other than the buzz of large scale dog pounds being made in a Delhi by the MCD and some vet agencies from outside India participating in the future ABC without local AWOs