Hyderabad: Animals seized while they are being illegally transported are being dumped in open places with not even a fence. Only in rare cases are they sent to gaushalas.
T. Chandrasekhar of Rajahmundry, who is fighting a case before the High Court challenging the action of the police dumping the seized animals in Palmoline Grove without shelter, water and fodder, in East Godavari district said that as per the Animal Protection Act, state governments are under obligation to constitute a Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) in each district. Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and AP Cow Slaughter Prohibition and Animal Preservation Act 1977 mandate constitution of an SPCA in each district, he added.
He said that in his case, the Hyderabad High Court has directed both state governments to constitute SPCAs in all the districts and the AP government has filed an affidavit stating that it has constituted SPCAs in all 13 districts, while Telangana is yet to constitute them.
But Gopal R. Surabathula of Animal Rescue Organisation said that though the AP government informed the HC that it had constituted the SPCAs, in fact these are not yet functional as they lack fencing, shelter, fodder and water for the animals.
He said the Rules stipulate five acres for the shelter but in most districts less than this was allotted and the government has released a meagre Rs 50,000 to Rs 60,000 for each SPCA.
He recalled that in 2015, the AP government had issued GO Ms No 23 for constitution of Shandy Level Monitoring Committees in municipalities and major panchayats after being directed to do so by the HC. But those committees have become defunct because of the non-constitution of the SPCAs, as the Shandy Committee requires a nominee from the SPCA in addition to members from transport, veterinary and police departments and the Animal Welfare Board.
Mr Chandrasekhar said though the law mandates presence of a veterinarian at each shandy to certify the fitness of the animals to be transported, rarely is a doctor present in any shandy.