'Kerala has become dog's own country': SC takes up stray dog menace issue
The Supreme Court on September 9 will hear a bunch of cases that are related to the stray dog menace in Kerala after the petitioner’s counsel pleaded for an urgent listing since the state had “become dogs own country from god’s own country”.
According to local reports, at least 20 people have been killed in the state due to dog bites this year.
A bench of CJI UU Lalit and Justice S Raveendra Bhat agreed to bring forward the hearing from September 26, while listening to advocate BK Biju, who cited startling figures of “10 lakh dog bites in five years” in the state. He requested the court to direct the Kerala government to take measures to counter the problem.
The lawyer said, “From god’s own country, Kerala has become dog’s own country.”
According to the petitioner’s lawyer, there has been a spike in dog bites and a 12-year-old girl had died after being bitten by a rabid dog despite taking anti-rabies vaccines. The counsel pointed out that daily wagers, school children, women were being attacked and that it was becoming a serious issue affecting the poor people. Further, he said that the situation is very critical since many children are being bitten by street dogs and are in a serious condition.
Further, the lawyer requested the “present status” of the Jagan Commission that was constituted by the SC in 2016 to handle complaints of dog bites and compensation for victims. The commission was headed by a former Kerala high court judge Justice S Siri Jagan.
The report had said that the situation was “grave” and the excessive stray canine population was causing a serious threat to public safety and had to be brought under control. The SC had been surprised at the severity of the stray dog menace in the state at that time. Addressing reporters in Kochi, Justice Siri Jagan had said that one lakh dog bites were being reported from Kerala every year.