ELURU: As many as 520 cases have been registered in the district till date and the number is likely to increase in the coming days, with the law enforcers making all efforts to implement the High Court orders on preventing cockfights in the State.
In a special interview to The New Indian Express, SP M Ravi Prakash said that police officials are on high alert to curb cockfights in the district. He said that Section 144 of the CrPC had already been promulgated in the district.
The SP said that the High Court had issued specific directions to stop cockfights in the district. “We will take stringent action against organisers and punters involved in the cockfights and register cases under Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act,” Prakash said.
650 bind over cases filed
Giving details on police deployment to stop cockfights, Ravi Prakash said that the police had formed 60 teams in the district. “Each team will have a mandal tahsildar, a SI, four constables, an NGO and a videographer. These teams will tour respective mandals and take steps to stop cockfights, besides video graphing those activities,” the SP said. He stated that the teams will identify the rings where cockfights may take place. He informed that show-cause notices have already been issued to 50 persons.
“Besides this, 650 bind over cases have been filed against habitual organisers and knife sellers. From January 1 to 11, 520 cases have been filed against organisers and punters,” the SP said. When asked about any political pressure, he said there was no pressure from anyone. “We are working as per the directions of the DGP,” he said.
Punters bet big
He stated that compared to last year, highest number of cases have been registered in the district this year. The SP said that police pickets have been set up at big rings arranged for cockfights.
“Crores of rupees change hands every year over cockfights in the State. We have informers in every village and on receipt of information, we will seize the amount and also enquire about their funding sources,” he said.
The SP said that animal rights activists have also submitted representations to them seeking prevention of cockfights.
Prakash said that they have launched awareness campaigns against cockfights and conducting counselling to villagers.