Chandigarh, July 3, 2019 (Yes Punjab News)
Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Wednesday constituted a Working Group under the chairmanship of Additional Chief Secretary (Health) to tackle the growing menace of stray dogs in the state.
Presiding over a high level meeting to discuss the growing incidents of dog bites in the state, Captain Amarinder directed the Chief Secretary to explore possibility to take support from the Government of India to eradicate the problem.
He also asked the Chief Secretary to regularly monitor the progress of implementation and achievement of the specific targets under the action plan given to all the Deputy Commissioners in this regard.
The Working Group set up to suggest ways to address the problem has been asked to submit its report within two weeks. It has been mandated with the task of finalizing the action plan to check the stray dogs menace in a result-oriented manner, with a time-bound strategy to control their population.
Principal Secretary Rural Development & Panchayats are members of the Group, which has Principal Secretary Animal Husbandry as its convenor besides Vice Chancellor Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU) to provide technical support.
Expressing concern over the growing problem, which had assumed alarming proportions, the Chief Minister also asked the Principal Secretaries of the Departments of Animal Husbandry and Rural Development & Panchayats to work out a joint strategy to install state-of-the-art rendering plants in place of the dead animals disposal yards (hadda roris), which attract stray dogs in large numbers.
The Chief Minister asked both these officers to set up rendering plants in Municipal Corporations as well as Village Panchayats for proper disposal of the remains of the dead cattle in a scientific manner.
The Chief Minister also asked the Principal Secretary Animal Husbandry to expedite the programme to sterilise stray dogs.
Meanwhile, Principal Secretary Animal Husbandry apprised the Chief Minister that as many as 1,12,431 cases of dog bites were reported in 2017 and 1,13,637 in 2018 across the state, of which 13,185 and 15,324, respectively, were reported in Ludhiana district alone.
He also told the Chief Minister that out of 4.70 lac total canine population, 3.05 lac comprised population of stray dogs. The meeting was further informed that 1,20,000 units of anti-rabies vaccine were issued in 2017 and 1,98,780 in 2018, and 195 anti-rabies centres had been established for treatment of dog bites.
Highlighting the activities of the Local Government department to check the stray dog menace, Director Local Government informed the Chief Minister that out of total 167 Urban Local Bodies (ULBs), 100 ULBs had got resolution passed for sterilization to be started before September 30, 2019. In nine Urban Local Bodies in Amritsar, Jalandhar, Ludhiana, Patiala, Mohali, Hoshiarpur, Pathankot, Zirakpur and Mandi Gobindgarh, ABC (Animal Birth Control) dogs programme was going on in full swing.
Taking part in the deliberations, VC GADVASU stressed the need to ensure public participation to control the dog menace efficiently in mission mode. He also assured the Animal Husbandry department of all possible technical support and cooperation in its ongoing programmes and activities to control stray dogs.
He also mentioned that post-bite and preventive anti-rabies vaccination was administered to 122 and 966 dogs respectively, besides administering preventive anti-rabies vaccines to 1371 students, staff and faculty of the university.
Prominent amongst others who attended the meeting were Media Advisor to CM Raveen Thukral, Chief Secretary Karan Avtar Singh, ACS Health Satish Chandra, Principal Secretary to CM Tejveer Singh, Principal Secretary Rural Development & Panchayats DK Tiwari, Principal Secretary Animal Husbandry Raj Kamal Chaudhary, Director Rural Development & Panchayats Jaskirat Singh, Director Local Government Karnesh Sharma and Vice Chancellor GADVASU Dr. AS Nanda.