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Dog feeder alleges harassment from Navi Mumbai civic staff, locals - Times of India

Dog feeder alleges harassment from Navi Mumbai civic staff, locals – Times of India

NAVI MUMBAI: City-based dog feeders have complained of aggravated harassment from not only the locals, but also from the civic staff of Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC).
Bina Kesavan, aA dog feeder from Belapur sector 8, has alleged that she is being targeted and harassed by localsand also the NMMC staff who promptly land at her place someone makes a call to the civic staff.
“On Tuesday, some of the dog catchers and municipal staffers came to my house and said that there was a complaint against me for keeping dogs who also bark. I am afraid that healthy dogs are picked up from our localities, and taken to Turbhe dog center, where viral infections like parvo and other diseases like gastro often affect the stray dogs,” said Bina.
“We feeders are actually doing the job of the government; of showing compassion to the street animals, feeding them and also vaccinating them. In my house, I have adopted three stray dogs and kept six vulnerable pups. Another dog which needs to be sterilized is also kept at my house, so that the dog catchers can easily take him for the sterlization operation. Hence, this particular dog was barking at night, which some locals objected to. There is hardly any compassion in their hearts for the poor street animals.”
Animal activist Arati Chauhan, commented: “Some of the politicians are trying to please some locals by promptly sending the civic staff to the houses of feeders, and questioning them if they have any license or other documents to keep or adopt stray dogs. This is nothing but harassment.”
“A few days ago, a cat feeder from Vashi was shocked and in tears because some officials entered their house and took away all the cats she was taking care of saying that they had received a complaint from the locals. This is wrong. NMMC must not allow such harassment to continue, otherwise the animal lovers may have to move court.”
The NMMC deputy municipal commissioner (veterinary services) Dr Shriram Pawar, told TOI: “If a feeder has adopted any stray dogs in her house, then she should show the officials documents in this regard. However, I will look into the matter if any sort of harassment is being done on feeders and animal carers.”
“One of Bina’s neighbours had spoken to me over phone in a rude manner. He claimed to be a media person, but was talking nonsensical counter points like why the feeders don’t keep beggars and drug addicts at their homes. Feeders are in the minority, but they follow all the rules and regulations while showing compassion towards stray animals. It causes a lot of pain and anxiety when the civic staff forcibly takes away the animals they look after,” Chauhan said.
Vashi based dog feeder and activist, Rohitt Malhotra, commented: “They mostly complain that dogs are a nuisance and bark loudly. This is inhuman and cruel. Dogs and cats have coexisted with humans for centuries. Suddenly some haters have problem with community animals. Politicians are also appeasing them, because of upcoming elections; but shouldn’t they be more concerned about the human encroachments and illegal hawkers on footpaths, rather than go after the poor dogs? This witch-hunt against animals and the feeders is shameful.”

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