We have seen many dogs who are coughing really hard and continuously in this unbearable summer heat of Delhi-NCR, may be you have too…the cough could be because of dust-triggered Respiratory Infection, says our consultant veterinary doctor. It is painful to see the dogs coughing this way, trying as if they were to release something out that is stuck in their throat and often spitting out phlegm (‘balgam‘ as it is called in Hindi).
The treatment* we have successfully used to treat four dogs on the street over the past month and cure them off their cough is as follows, sharing here so that the readers of this blog can also make use of it:
*Please note: We are not doctors, but we are sharing this treatment protocol here because we have tried it successfully and we understand that it is very difficult to take each and every street dog to a vet or veterinary hospital for treatment. Many ailments, if detected early enough in street dogs, can be best treated on the street itself.
Everyday, we receive many queries and calls over the Jaagruti helpline complaining about how their Residential Society’s Welfare Associations (commonly abbreviated as RWA’s) putting up notices ‘banning pets’, coming out with ‘no pets allowed’ clauses in their society bye-laws, ‘asking people to abandon their pets’, ‘mistreating street dogs’ etc. The article below by Rishi Dev of Citizens for Animal Rights, is a must-read for all those facing such a situation. This article explains as well as empowers you with information to fight your own respective battles in this regard for your sake and for your pet child..who has no one other than you in this world to fight for him/her or their rights.
In 2010, the Central Mumbai Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum gave a strong directive to a group housing society who was charging a pet owner resident monthly fees for using lifts. The court clearly said – “Dogs are part of a family hence they have the right to use the lift just as any other member, and we cannot decide who is a family member and who isn’t, each family decides for itself.”
Before this in 2008 a similar order came from a lower court that clarified that pets are part of family and cannot be restricted from living or using the residential complexes.
In 2012, the Gurgaon Municipal Corporation was the first of their kind to issue strict notices to all CGHS and RWAs in Gurgaon, warning them not to formulate rules and regulations against pets and that any such move is in conflict with the law. The notices clearly stated – “Such a move may lead to dissolution of the RWA and prosecution of its office bearers, says the letter. It is illegal to remove animals from the area through security guards employed by RWAs. Nor can they intimidate residents who may be feeding those animals. Under stray dog management rules 2001, it’s illegal for an individual, RWA or estate management to remove or relocate dogs. The dogs have to be sterilized and vaccinated and returned to the same area. Vaccinated and sterilized dogs cannot be removed by the municipality too. Under Section 506 of the IPC, it’s a crime to threaten abuse or harass neighbors who feed animals.”
So what is origin of these laws protecting dogs and cats from humans who treat them unequal?
The system of law in Indian is a tiered system, based on Arthashastra from 400 B.C. & Manusmriti from 100 A.D. wherein the central philosophy was tolerance & pluralism. This is the reason the constitution declares India to be a sovereign socialist secular democratic republic, assuring its citizens justice, equality, and liberty.
The hierarchical system of Indian constitution thus forbids the lower hierarchies to overrule or override the higher orders, laws, directions or acts. This means that if Supreme Court says ‘yes’ to something, the ‘no’ by the high courts’ gets automatically nullified. This hierarchy comes down to the lowest local urban body or court. In India most courts have already ruled in favor of the animals in all respects. Hence any organization, individual or body ruling or following actions against such orders are automatically breaking the law and in contempt of the constitution and the honorable courts.
There are laws and constitutional provisions directly allowing people to take care of animals, whether inside or outside their places of work or living. The laws clearly protect people and their animals from all kinds of discrimination. The Indian constitution states them very clearly via various sections. Article 48-A - “The State shall endeavor to protect & improve the environment and to safeguard the forests and wildlife of the country.” Article 51-A deals with the fundamental duties of the citizen. Article 51-A(g) states – ” It shall be duty of every citizen of India to protect & improve the natural environment including forests, lakes, rivers and wildlife and to have compassion for living creatures.” Article 19 deals with the fundamental rights of the citizen. So “Right to Protect the Environment ” comes within Article 19. After the Stockholm Declaration in 1972 the Indian Constitution (Forty-second Amendment) Act, 1976 inserted for the first time specific provisions to protect & improve the environment. I.P.C. Section 428 and 429 provides severe punishment to people resorting to dislocation, abduction and acts of cruelty towards community animals or pets. Ministry of Public Grievances notification and a similar notification by Animal Welfare Board of India dated March 2008, provide immunity to animal feeders and restrict government employees or bodies such as Resident Welfare Associations from harassing people who try to feed or help animals. Article 25, 26, 27, 28 provides religious freedom to all citizens and preserves the principle of secularism in India. According to the constitution, all religions are equal before the State. Citizens are free to preach, practice and propagate any religion of their choice in their own way. Keeping or feeding animals is a part of the same right. The other acts which protect animals are The Environment (Protection) Act – 1986 & Wildlife (Protection) Act 1972.
Hence, anyone taking care, keeping pets or street animals has natural immunity in the law. There are many orders pertaining to street animals by many courts. But in the recent times many RWAs have shown their autocracy over residents keeping pets. Keeping the same in mind the Animal Welfare Board of India and many municipal corporations have time and again written to the Registrar of Societies (ROS) and their RWAs to refrain from these undemocratic actions.
An RWA is a private, representative body which has no legal sanctity. It is just a group of people who have come together and formed a club. Their resolutions and bye laws are not legal mandates and especially if they violate the fundamental rights of a citizen or even more goes against an existing court order. Such RWAs can be legally prosecuted and if need be can face fines or imprisonment or both. Such precedence has been set before. If any resident faces such harassment from RWAs, must immediately approach the local magistrate and file a complaint of harassment and violation of their fundamental rights. The complaint must also be sent to ROS asking them to dissolve the RWA with immediate effect. AWBI must also be approached for taking appropriate legal action against such RWA members.
Guest post* by Faizan Jaleel
*Views expressed herein are solely the personal views of the author – Faizan Jaleel, who can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org
**For those interested in the subject, there is also a website based book titled, “Animals in Islam” by Al-Hafiz B.A. Mazri , which can be accessed by clicking here.
Being a Muslim has been linked to meat eating and in fact rightly so because many or most of the Muslims (followers of Islam) are non vegetarians. Being a Muslim myself and a non vegetarian till around 2009, I could simply understand that meat was a part of our cuisine and never in the entire time of my being a Non Vegetarian came from any religious guidance at that time. Meat was cooked and we ate it. It was not told to us in any religious sermon that you should eat meat to be a Muslim and yes neither it was the other way round like it was also not told to us not to eat meat as well. We didn’t know about the slaughter and cruelty and the pain and suffering and sentience. It was out of sight and so out of mind.
If we look at the history of Islam which had its roots in the sands and deserts, it is obvious that many hundred years ago there would have been almost meager vegetation and that’s why the cuisine there was mostly bland (lack of spices) and meat (lack of fruits, vegetables and grains). While Islam does teach about being compassionate and merciful and loving to all the life forms, it doesn’t prohibit meat eating, which fits well for that era. There is no evidence that I could refer to where it has been propagated in Islam to raise farm animals for organised slaughter and profit making if there are alternates available in abundance.
The entire meat eating frenzy which is common to a large part of our society is an organised business that rides on billions and trillions of dollars, cruelty and misery. Each day many million lives are taken in an indefinite number of slaughter houses. Many countries and unfortunately my Country also participates in this madness and crime and holds a distinction of causing maximum cruelty through its extremely crude methods of killing and murdering animals. Billions are earned each day.
As I see it and present my view, I believe, that meat eating in today’s world which provides a sea of alternatives is not as per the teachings of Islam. I believe Prophet Mohammad would have never approved of this, I believe that no Islamic scholar can justify this madness of killing and profit making when it is not required to be as per the tenets of Islam, however it can be very easily proved that this form of mass murder is against the teachings of love, compassion and mercy that Islam preaches so strongly. And it is not only about eating meat and killing animals, another aspect of the same issue is the amount of food grains used in raising these cattle and livestock population, the food that could have very easily fed millions of starving human population.
In Islam, drinking alcohol is prohibited because it is “sharaab” or “water that induces indecency” and is habit forming and is something that is not necessary to life – based on the same principle, meat in today’s context is extremely habit forming and not at all required as there are other options available – so why Muslims should not denounce meat in total and live the spirit of Islam!
Is it so hard for us to stop eating meat because it has become a habit; is it stronger than the urge to be righteous? Has it become bigger that the religion itself?
I know by writing this I must have disturbed many Muslims, but that is what I meant to do, so that the next time when you have your juicy chicken breast, roasted lamb, steaks or veal, biryani or qorma, roghan josh or stew, kebabs or liver fry.. you take a moment to think that it is coming from one of the murder houses which just made a profit running in billions at the cost of your ignorance about your own religion and you are still happy about it.
This is the time to think again and be a rightful Muslim…. Not eating meat will not kill you however you will save a life somewhere.
Ignorance is a crime, seek knowledge and be an informed and compassionate being that is what we ought to be – all of us!
With love for all….
Faizan Vegan J
In this post, we are sharing with you one comprehensive document that compiles all the laws, news-clippings and court orders/rulings, pertaining to street dogs
Please download this document by clicking here: A Dossier of Indian Street Dog related laws and court rulings
Save it, take print-outs and read it well.
These are updated laws, rules, orders pertaining to DOGS, their feeding and other rights. Most dog lovers don’t bother to read them and end up getting harassed while the law is strong and clear. Please keep a copy ready and if possible submit one copy in your local police station and the RWA, so unfortunate encounters can be averted beforehand.
A point wise synopsis is also written in the beginning of this document.
We thank Citizens for Animal Rights for their effort in compiling this document and sharing the same with us. By posting it here, we are sharing it further and hope you all will share it widely too and feel empowered.
Remember: Your responsibility however doesn’t end with just feeding them, please also ensure that these dogs you care for are sterilized and vaccinated…since you are friendly with them, can touch them, it is much easier for you to collaborate with the NGO run Animal Hospital (that runs the local Municipality supported ‘Animal Birth Control’ Programme for street dogs) near your home to help undertake the sterilization of these dogs, it is just a one time exercise and will prevent you the agony of seeing pups dying (of illnesses and car accidents) in front of your eyes ever so frequently.
Animal Welfare Board of India has decided to issue Identity Cards to Street Dog Feeders/Colony Care Takers of Animals who are taking care of animals in their locality.
A proforma of registration form can be downloaded from this link- http://awbi.org/awbi-pdf/caretakers.pdf or please click below.
Please download the form and send the duly filled in form along with the following:
ANIMAL WELFARE BOARD OF INDIA
(Ministry of Environment and Forests, Govt. of India)
Post Box No. 8672, 13/1, Third Seaward Road, Valmiki Nagar,Thiruvanmiyur, Chennai – 600 041
A news report on the same in Indian Express dated 21st January 2013, by Senior Correspondent Kamala Kelkar, is posted below. Please hoever note that the process may take less or more than a couple of weeks for you to receive your cards, as mentioned below
People who care for street dogs will soon be getting government-issued identity cards. The new ID cards are expected to do away with harassment faced by many such persons from the general public, when they try to feed canines on the road.
In a move that animal activists termed “unprecedented,” the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) has decided last week that anyone who voluntarily cares for strays — dog feeders and colony caretakers who tend to animals in their locality.
It Board has put up a one-page registration form (can be downloaded free of cost) on its website awbi.org, for those who want to get these ID cards.
The applicant needs to fill in personal information such as name, address and experience. Once the application is submitted, the ID card would be processed and mailed to the applicant, board member and legal advisor Anjali Sharma said.
“The card would have the person’s name and an attestation that he/she is doing a right and lawful deed and the Animal Welfare Board supports it. This lends credibility to the person,” Sharma said.
The AWBI is a legal advisory body that was formed under the Animal Prevention Act of 1960 to protect the animals.
Sharma explained that the goal of the card, which does not provide any exclusive rights, was solely the welfare of animals and caretakers.
“Most people don’t realize that sterilization and vaccination of stray dogs would be possible only through feeding and befriending dogs,” Sharma said.
In December 2011, the Delhi High Court had passed an order voicing its approval for designated “dog feeding spots” for stray canines in the city. It passed the order on a petition which sought to protect dogs from “intimidating” residents, so they could be fed without any hassle.
Rishi Dev, founder of Citizens for Animal Rights who has written a book on “Urban disputes over animals”, said this was the first time that the government was supporting such an initiative.
Sharma hoped that many would come forward to apply for the cards. “They are performing a duty,” she said. “And it’s a legitimate exercise.”