Where to go?
As dogs are on the prowl in Srinagar city
NUISANCE BY MUDASIR IRFAN
Last few years have witnessed a different kind of terror hovering over the streets of Srinagar city, that of stray or feral dogs. Residents of Srinagar city have been frustrated by exponential growth of dog population and the sense of insecurity caused by them. The reported cases of dog bites and attacks on humans have also seen an increase here in Srinagar city. The school kids seem to be more prone to attacks and have been the prime target of these stray dogs. Few days back, a 10 year old school boy of Lal- Bazaar area of Srinagar city was returning to home from tuitions and he was attacked by over a dozen of stray dogs leaving him badly wounded with over a hundred bites. About eight months ago, another boy of same age lost his life after he slipped and drowned in the river Jehlum after being chased and attacked by stray dogs. There are other innumerable incidents when our children became the victims of savage beast biting. Open garbage dumps and mismanaged waste disposals by the local municipal authorities in the city have become inhabitable shelters for such kind of dogs and these can be usually seen in large groups around garbage dumps in the residential areas.
Over the past years, premier hospitals like SMHS, Lal-Ded, and SKIMS have been also occupied by stray dogs causing immense inconveniences to the attendants and patients. The ferocious canines have created a terrible fear among all sections of society. People feel scared to go outside their homes to visit their fields because of terror caused by these dogs. Parents now prefer to keep any elder along with their school going children. They do not allow their children to play outside their homes. Even many elders feel frightened to go for morning and evening prayers. The menace is unavoidable for hapless people, who can do nothing but suffer without any fault of theirs.
Although, some years back the Srinagar Municipal Authority started a dog sterilization programme to overcome the population of stray dogs here but it was stopped immediately without getting any achievement. Whenever anybody poses a question to government or concerned authority about dog menace, they refer to some court cases and intervention from some animal rights activists. Of course, animals also have certain rights but, there are several other questions which should be answered. When there is a case of a confrontation between animal rights and human rights, whose rights should be preferred? Those who advocate for the hazardous dog menace to be not controlled are encouraging a crime to endanger the lives of innocents. If a lion or tiger turns a man eater, does it mean that it is fair to sympathize and firmly deal with the beast? Lovers or protectors of those animals which are dangerous to human beings should organize themselves and contribute through their financial donations, just as foreigners support the suffered human beings around the world through religious NGO's or UNICEF. When the dogs are killed they feel and what about when they see killed human babies? Is it not worthy of compassion?
I am not endorsing anything against dogs. No doubt, they are man’s best friends and loyal. But after all they are animals and animal instinct and ferociousness is still intact with them. It will be documented that when looking for a kill, they go for a weakest and the smallest prey who is least likely to resist. And this I need not justify, is usually a child going to school or playing on the street. I urge the government not to concede to the unreasonable demands of voluntary agencies that are taking rather a myopic view of whole situation. Would they still say the dogs should not be killed if their own children are subjects of attack by these villainous dogs and has anybody asked the victim’s parents what the approach should be? I hope this issue will not meet the same fate as innumerable others; action is taken when the issue is hot and then forgotten when it is off the front pages. Please choose now; stray dogs or our children.
(Mudasir Irfan is Research scholar at department, Botany A M U Aligarh. Feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org)
Lastupdate on : Sun, 29 Jan 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 29 Jan 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 30 Jan 2012 00:00:00 IST
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