CHENNAI: A day after the disturbing video of a dog being flung from the terrace of a four storey apartment triggered outrage, Chennai city police picked up the two suspects, both medical students, from their native towns on Tuesday night.
On Wednesday morning, both of them were released on bail after Judicial magistrate Judge Santhosam asked them to pay Rs 10,000 surety.
According to college sources, both the students have been suspended.
Meanwhile, much to the relief of animal lovers, it was learnt later in the day that the dog survived the fall, escaping with a fracture to one of its hind legs. “Today evening it returned to the house as usual and is in care of the house owner,” said Kundrathur police inspector, R Frank D Rubean, who is investigating the case.
Police sources told Express that the accused students, Gowtham Sudharshan from Tirunelveli who threw the poor animal, and his friend Ashish Paul from Nagercoil who filmed the video, were tracked by the special teams.
The two are expected to be brought to Chennai on Wednesday morning, according to police sources.
Pressure was put on the students by the authorities at the medical college where they are studying, who informed their parents that they would be suspended from writing all exams if they did not turn themselves in.
Police investigations revealed that the dog was thrown from the terrace of the house in which Ashish was staying on rent for nearly last five years. Gowtham, his classmate who is staying at a house nearby, had visited Ashish on that day.
According to the sections of the Indian Penal Code under which the duo have been charged – Section 428 and 429 – carry a maximum prison sentence of two and five years respectively. Even if they are convicted in this case, it will not bar them from practicing after completing their MBBS.
“If a doctor is convicted, his name will be removed from the medical council registry during the period he serves in jail,” explained Dr K Senthil, president of Tamil Nadu Medical Council. But that has not satisfied many.
“Harming an innocent puppy is an indicator of psychopathy in its early stages, which is not to be taken lightly. This is very disturbing, and in my opinion, such a person should not be allowed to practice medicine,” said Kripa Jagannathan, a veterinarian. Echoing her views, G Paul Fredrick, veterinary obstetrician and gynaecologist said this was particularly cruel on the part of medical students. “A complaint should be filed with the Medical Council of India to ensure they cannot practice,” he added.
According to another veterinarian Priya Govind, this may not have been their first time. Since they got away with such crimes in the past, “they may have decided it was time to share their perversions with the world,” she said.