SC issues contempt notice to TMC officer

SC issues contempt notice to TMC officer

The Supreme Court on Friday issued contempt notice to the chief officer, Sakaleshapura TMC for having “buried 350 dogs at a cemetery ground in “wanton disregard” of the apex court’s order.

The top court had on November 18, 2015 prohibited use of any “innovative method or subterfuge” and directed for following strictly the provisions of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 and the Animal Birth Control Rules, 2001 that mandated sterilisation and relocation of stray canines.

A bench of Justices N V Ramana and Justice Mohan M Shantanagoudar asked Chief Officer
Sakaleshapura TMC, Hassan, Wilson V T to respond why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against him and others for “willful disobedience” of the apex court’s order issued to all panchyats and municipalities.

Advocates Prashant Bhushan and Sidharth K Garg, appearing for animal rights activist and Bengaluru resident, Neveena Kamath, contended contumacious actions were undertaken by Wilson and George Robert, dog catcher.

They cited the tenders issued on October 11, 2017 to catch and relocate stray dogs out of the
Sakleshpura municipality. As evidences, they also furnished records related to the work order issued to Robert to catch and relocate stray dogs on Oct 21, 2017 with the target of 350 dogs at a rate of Rs 250 per dog and payment made to him to the sum of Rs 91,537. The counsel also submitted that an FIR was lodged against the officer and the dog catcher on January 3, this year.

“The actions of the respondents are a direct assault on the sanctity of a judicial order and the majesty of the court. Not to mention they violate several animal protection laws of India,” the counsel said. The counsel further claimed the officer has undone all the progress made by the apex court in the hearing of ‘All India Stray Dogs case’ in years and the module for the management of stray dog population as submitted by the Animal Welfare Board of India.