NEW DELHI: Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi on Friday came down heavily on the Kerala government’s decision to kill stray dogs terming it unlawful and unscientific. “Where are the funds sanctioned by the Animal Welfare Board to Kerala for sterilisation of dogs,” she asked.
Kerala government had asked civic bodies to initiate steps for culling of violent stray dogs. The issue became a talking point in the state after a 65-year-old woman died after being mauled by a pack of dogs at Pullivilla near Thiruvananthapuram.
Gandhi claimed that the move could make the other dogs even more hostile and said that the Kerala Cabinet’s decision to kill dangerous canines to deal with the dog menace could be misused as an excuse to kill any dog.
The Union Minister, who was also an animal rights activist, said that killing dogs was not only unlawful but counter-productive as it would lead to more breeding.
“I am totally with the people of Kerala but killing dogs is not the solution and the law would be broken,” she said.
Asserting that the best solution would be to sterilise the dogs, Gandhi said, “If you sterilise the dogs they would become gentle and sterilised dogs never bite.”
“Delhi had 5 lakh dogs and once we sterilised them, the number came down to 70,000 even though the population of Delhi has gone up over the years,” she said. Gandhi blamed Kerala’s stray dog menace on the increasing urbanisation of the state. She said this was leading to more waste generation and rise in the number of stray dogs.
“Kerala is heavily urbanised. There is very little control on the waste being generated, which inturn would increase the number of rats. Since dogs were scavengers, they always go where rats are present,” she said..