Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service
Amritsar, November 21
Despite tall claims, the third drive of dog sterilisation has failed to sustain as the company hired for the drive stopped its operation a few months back. The drive was inaugurated on December 20 but in the absence of required infrastructure, the company did not achieve the targets. The MC had decided to spend Rs 18 lakh on sterilisation of 2,000 stray dogs as a pilot project, but after sterilising around 100 dogs, the company stopped the work. Apart from this, five zonal-level sterilisation centres were announced by Mayor Karamajit Singh Rintu but the project has failed to see the light of the day.
Meanwhile, there has been a massive increase in the number of stray dogs in the city. Streets are taken over by aggressive dogs which follow and bark at passers-by every now and then. On Wednesday, dogs attacked a government teacher during morning walk in Ghanupur Kala area. The parks and gardens have become the safe haven for the dogs. Children, women and elderly people avoid going for a walk in the gardens due to the stray dog menace. Even tourists have complained about the menace at Heritage Street, heritage walk route and around Golden Temple. More than 10 dogs can be seen roaming at Heritage Street anytime.
The civil hospital staff stated that several cases of dog bite were reported on a daily basis. In the absence of anti-rabies medicines in government hospitals, residents have to buy injection by spending Rs 350. A victim of dog bite has to get five injections. As per MC officials, there are 40,000 stray dogs in the city and a massive drive is required to cap their growing population.
Mayor Karamjit Singh Rintu said, “Now, the sterilisation drive will be started after developing a proper infrastructure. We are constructing a complex for cows and a dog sterilisation centre at Chheharta. The MC will spend Rs 1.30 crore on it.”.
It is worth mentioning here that after drawing a blank from its dog sterilisation drives in the past, the MC initiated the third drive in December 2018. Earlier, the MC had started such a drive in March 2017 but failed to achieve success. A similar drive was also initiated in July 2016. While the population of canines raised from 15,000 to 40,000 in the time.
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