HYDERABAD: A dog-bite is like a communal riot for which no individual is completely responsible and people should not let one incident cloud their judgment of animals, Blue Cross Hyderabad founder-chairperson Amala Akkineni has said.
Her observation has come in the in the wake of a stray dog attack on a Class-III student at Bowenpally in the city recently.
Speaking to Express after inaugurating a three-day honorary animal welfare officer (HAWO) training programme here on Friday, the actress-turned-animal welfare activist, said, “We don’t want children to get attacked or bitten by dogs. If there is a dog-bite, chances are that the local dogs are removed and a new dog entered the community. A dog-bite is like a communal riot; no body is individually responsible for that, neither the human beings nor the dogs. Sterilise and vaccinate the local dogs, they will protect the community from new dogs,” she said “Unfortunately, whenever there is an animal involved in a mishap, people immediately blame the animal. In fact, it is very easy to blame not just the individual animal, but its entire species. Suppose, in a crowded street, if one man commits murder, does that mean all the other people in that street are murderers? One incident should not cloud our judgment and make us say that all stray dogs are dangerous,” Amala added.
On Thursday, a Class-III student of SC-ST welfare hostel at Bapuji Nagar was attacked by a stray dog when he was heading back to the hostel from the public drinking water tank near a temple. He suffered severe bites on his face and head, was rescued by locals and taken to hospital. The dog is yet to be caught.
Earlier in the day, she said HAWO training was very important for young animal welfare activists. “It is a very rigorous training in animal laws and to get to this stage, one need to have at least three years of volunteer experience with any animal welfare organisation. In 1992 when I moved to Hyderabad, before starting the BCH, I had taken this training. I know exactly how exciting it is and how much understanding it gives to stand up and start working with for the cause,“ Amala said.
NG Jayasimha, managing director of HSI India said, “As citizens of this country which has the best animal protection laws, we need to have more informed and compassionate people. This training is the best way to ensure that honorary animal welfare officers can immediately deal with issues of animal abuse.”
The programme was held in collaboration with the Animal Welfare Board of India, BCH and People for Animals (PFA). Apart from Amala, eminent animal welfare activists Vasanti Vadi, PFA-Hyderabad chairperson, and Gauri Maulekhi, adviser to Union minister of women and child development Maneka Gandhi, will conduct classes.