GUWAHATI: Seventy-five dogs were rescued on Thursday night in Samaguri in Assam while being illegally transported to Nagaland—a place with high dog meat demand.
However, 23 of them died due to hunger and dehydration post remaining in captivity for many days.
Four people—Prakash Momin, Sanio Sangma, Raju Momin and Paobeng Sangma— who were transporting the dogs in a mini-van have been arrested.
The vehicle, which was on its way to Nagaland’s commercial hub Dimapur, was intercepted by the locals on Thursday night post which the police were informed.
People for Animals, an NGO, said the dogs were loaded in a small vehicle, one atop the other, and 23 had died due to suffocation besides hunger and dehydration.
“On learning about the dogs, we sent our team to Samaguri. The team brought the dogs that survived to Guwahati and has kept them in our shelter home. We gave them food but they were too frail and sick to eat. We are treating them and hope they will survive,” Sangeeta Goswami, chairperson of the NGO, told the New Indian Express.
“Usually, the dogs are collected over a period of time and kept confined to sacks, neck-down. After a sufficient number of dogs are collected, they are then illegally transported,” she added.
The demand for dog meat in Nagaland is greater than its supply. One kg of the meat is sold at a price between Rs400 and Rs500 in Dimapur and the State capital Kohima. The meat is sold openly in the markets and there is no ban on its sale and consumption.
Dog meat is a delicacy in Nagaland. “Dog meat is not only delicious, it also has medicinal properties. It reduces body pain and gives stamina,” a Naga youth from Dimapur, who did not wish to be named, said.