With SHRC order, HDMP to intensify pig shifting drive

With SHRC order, HDMP to intensify pig shifting drive

When the pig menace has comparatively come down in the twin cities due to pig shifting drives being conducted since almost last five years, the Hubballi-Dharwad Mahanagara Palike (HDMP) is all set for another round of intensive pig shifting drive.

This time, the HDMP is doing it with the backup of an order of the Karnataka State Human Rights Commission (SHRC), which has asked the Palike to take suitable steps to ensure that complaints about pig menace do not arise.

When the HDMP started pig shifting drive in 2014, it faced severe resistance from the pig rearers, and even stone pelting incidents took place when these pigs were being caught and shifted. However, the drive resumed later, after time was given to pig rearers to shift their pigs. Since then, pigs were caught at several areas in the twin cities, and were shifted by pig catchers from Tumakuru and Tamil Nadu.

However, as pig shifting could not yield the expected results, one Jagan Pawar of Kamaripet had lodged a complaint with the SHRC last year, complaining that pig menace is severe at Bhavani Nagar area in Keshwapur. Now, the SHRC has directed the HDMP to check the pig menace, by conducting city rounds and surprise visits, in association with Police and Health Departments.

"We have received the SHRC order, and we will soon resume the pig shifting drive with more intensity. The resistance from pig rearers is more in Dharwad, and therefore, we have urged the Police Department to deploy more policemen to give security during the pig catching drive," said HDMP Veterinary Officer Ravi Saligoudar.

Pig catchers did not come frequently as they had to get at least 60 pigs per day, to meet their expenses. Pig rearers threatening them was also a reason for not conducting the drive frequently, he noted.

However, drives were conducted at selected areas, based on the complaints received from citizens, when the pig catchers were available, he added.

3,000 pigs now

When the pig shifting drive started, the number of pigs in the twin cities was estimated at around 50,000, and it has come down to around 3,000 now, including 2,000 in Dharwad itself, the officials said.

There is also an information that breeding of pigs is taking place in villages surrounding the City area, and these pigs would be shifted to urban areas later. Therefore, we have urged the superintendent of police to give protection to conduct the drive in those areas also, Dr Saligoudar added.

On HC order

HDMP Commissioner C W Shakeel Ahmed, when asked about the High Court order against transporting the caught pigs to places outside the State, in a case related to Davangere City Corporation, noted that pigs that were caught would be released into the forest areas, and would not be transported out of the State.