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Stray dogs terrorise residents in Millennium city

What started as an act of compassion for the hapless stray animals in the most difficult phase of the lockdown earlier this year has now turned a bane for the citizens.

Published: 30th October 2020 09:21 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th October 2020 09:21 AM   |  A+A-

Stray dogs in a lane  at Cuttack | Express

Stray dogs in a lane  at Cuttack | Express

By Express News Service

CUTTACK:  What started as an act of compassion for the hapless stray animals in the most difficult phase of the lockdown earlier this year has now turned a bane for the citizens. The city is suddenly witnessing a huge explosion in the stray dog population, who are beginning to imperil the safety of common citizens. The strays had been drawn to different localities since the lockdown, when well-meaning people began to feed the animals as the closure of restaurants, eateries and streetfood outlets squeezed the availability of food.

But, as the lockdown was lifted and things are returning to normal, the animals have not moved out and become a menace across lanes and bylanes. They have begun to crowd the residential parts and pose serious threat to the people moving through by chasing them and even biting them. The situation has reached such a point that locals are now fearful of coming out at night on foot, cycle or two-wheeler. Accidents caused by the chasing stray dogs have become a common affair while dog-bite cases are also on the rise.

Stray dogs in a lane 
at Cuttack | Express

According to locals, no residential pocket is now spared by stray dogs. Earlier, the dogs were more visible on the main roads and the pockets where restaurants, eateries operated. Now, lured by the feeding practice, they have invaded the populated areas, a local of Tulasipur complained.“Prior to the lockdown, there were no stray dogs in our residential colony.

But, some youths started placing food in front of their houses for animals to feed during the lockdown. This attracted dogs from the nearby Rehman Chhak market. Today, the stray dogs have made our colony their home, chasing people returning home at night and sometimes even biting them”, said Jashobant Barik of Jobra Majhi Sahi.

While the Cuttack Municipal Corporation (CMC) has stopped its dog sterilisation drive, feeding of strays has only added to the problem.At markets too, the stray dog population has been rising and they mostly congregate at spots where food waste is dumped. Locals further pointed out that as garbage and carcasses of animals are being dumped on public roads, dogs gather at the spots looking for food and often get ferocious. “One cannot safely pass through such places without getting bitten by the strays”, said Ramesh Sahoo, a local. 

The problem, however, has escaped the notice of CMC which has no information on the stray dog population in the city. CMC officials did not comment on the issue even as locals demanded action to evacuate the animals from the residential areas, who are posing serious threat to public safety.


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