RAJAMAHENDRAVARAM: In a shocking incident, at least 100 stray dogs were allegedly poisoned to death and later their carcasses were buried in a pit near Perantam tank at Lingapalem village in West Godavari district.
According to available information, some pig rearers residing near the Perantam tank saw a few people burying carcasses of dogs after digging a pit. The dogs were reportedly caught from the village and its fringe areas.
Having learnt about the cruel act, West Godavari District Collector Karthikeya Misra on Friday ordered an inquiry into the killing of stray dogs.
Lingapalem panchayat secretary Suganraj told TNIE that some local people informed him about the burying of stray dog carcasses in a pit late in the night and he immediately went to Dharmajigudem police station to lodge a complaint.
“This is a cruel act. Some people of the village might have hired dog catchers to eliminate the stray dogs. Some puppies were also killed in the process,” he said.
Fight for Animals activist Challapalli Srilatha, however, disputed the claim of the panchayat secretary and said around 300 stray dogs were killed by hired catchers.
“We suspect the involvement of the panchayat sarpanch and his followers in the cruel act,’’ she said, and lodged a complaint with the police against the panchayat secretary and sarpanch. The police were initially reluctant to take the complaint, but they registered a case after persuasion, she said.
The animal rights activist also took the matter to the notice of the District Collector and the Superintendent of Police. She said the issue would also be taken up with the Animal Welfare Board.
Based on a complaint lodged by Srilatha, a case has been registered against the Lingapalem panchayat secretary and the sarpanch under Section 11 (L) of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 and Section 429 (Poisoning an animal) of the IPC.
Dharmajigudem Sub-Inspector P Ramesh said, “We suspect that the stray dogs might have been poisoned to death and later the carcasses were buried in a pit. Postmortem will be conducted on Saturday.”