Intervene in row about feeding stray dogs: HC to AWBI

Intervene in row between animal lovers, local residents over feeding stray dogs: Delhi HC to AWBI

The court also asked AWBI to identify a spot where the canines can be fed so that "peace and harmony" can be maintained in the locality

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The Delhi High Court has asked the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) to intervene in the row between some animal lovers and residents of a sector in Vasant Kunj in the national capital overfeeding of stray dogs.

The court also asked the AWBI to identify a spot where the canines can be fed so that "peace and harmony" can be maintained in the locality.

Justice Prathiba M Singh issued the direction on a plea moved by the animal lovers against the "hindrances", being created by the Residents Welfare Association (RWA) of E-2 Block of Vasant Kunj, in the feeding of stray dogs and in taking care of the canines.

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The petitioner-animal lovers, represented by advocate Abhik Chimni, told the court whenever they try to feed the street dogs, "enormous resistance is caused by the local residents".

Justice Singh said there was a 2009 order of the high court directing the AWBI to identify suitable spots or sites in colonies for feeding stray dogs.

"It, however, appears that there has been no consensus in identifying the suitable spot. The RWA appears to have been having apprehensions in view of the fact that children and senior residents also roam around in the open area of the block, for their own recreation," the court noted.

The court also noted that the residents of the area were also concerned about the safety of the children and others living there.

"The residents and the members of the RWA as also the petitioners have to act in harmony with each other and not in a manner which shall lead to unpleasant circumstances in the colony.

"Accordingly, in order to maintain peace and harmony in the locality,...AWBI shall send two representatives on March 8 to hold a meeting with the RWA and the petitioners," the court directed.

It further directed that during the meeting, the AWBI and the RWA shall interact with residents and the petitioners and identify a spot, not used by children, senior citizens or others, for feeding and taking care of the stray dogs.

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"Once the said spot is identified, the petitioners would feed and take care of the street dogs at that particular spot, and no hindrance, whatsoever, shall be caused to the petitioners in carrying out any activities in respect of the street dogs at the said spot," the court said.

It said the SHO of the area shall also be present at the time of the meeting and the officer shall ensure that peace and harmony is maintained.

With the direction, the court disposed of the plea moved by the animal lovers.

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