15 Nov 2023 9:45 AM GMT
The Karnataka High court on Wednesday directed the State government to give wide publicity to the guidelines regarding feeding of street animals and conflict resolution which suggest participation of residents.A division bench of Chief Justice Prasanna B Varale and Justice Krishna S Dixit, referring to the guidelines dated 31-12-2022 said : “Before parting, we must state that the...
The Karnataka High court on Wednesday directed the State government to give wide publicity to the guidelines regarding feeding of street animals and conflict resolution which suggest participation of residents.
A division bench of Chief Justice Prasanna B Varale and Justice Krishna S Dixit, referring to the guidelines dated 31-12-2022 said : “Before parting, we must state that the guidelines regarding feeding of street animals and conflict resolution, refers to a substantial participation of residents and it seems that majority of citizens as well as residents are least aware of such guidelines and the responsibility of themselves indicated in the guidelines regarding feeding of street animals and conflict resolution.”
Point number 3 under the caption "Street animals" in the guidelines reads : It is the responsibility of the residents to ensure that all dogs in their locality are sterilised and regularly vaccinated by local authority.
In conflict resolution, point no 1 reads thus: If anyone has a grievance with regard to any act of caregiver, feeders in relation to feeding of community dogs, they must engage in dialogue and discussion through animal welfare committee. If this does not solve, the Residents Welfare Association(RWA) may bring the grievance to the notice of the District Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (DSPCA) which shall ensure expeditious resolution of the issue.
The court said, “There can’t be a dispute on the aspect that unless steps are taken to make the public at large, citizens, residents made aware of guidelines, there shall be no effective implementation of guidelines and to achieve this purpose, the state can certainly give a wide publicity to these guidelines in the official websites of the state government.”
It suggested that the State Government may also explore the other modes of public awareness such as circulation of pamphlets through the department of information in the busy areas of the city or in registered cooperative societies, as well as taking necessary help from other platforms like local/regional television networks, by approaching theatre owners and giving necessary intimation to theatre owners so as to publicise these guidelines in the form of appeal or short film. At the rural/village level, state government, with help from zilla panchayat and local bodies, may issue directions to initiate the awareness programmes by beat of drums etc.
It clarified that “The suggestions are only illustrative and not exhaustive. The state government may not confine itself to these modes but explore other modes for public awareness.”
The bench gave the directions while hearing a petition filed by Ramesh Naik L, seeking proper implementation of Animal Birth Control (Dogs) Rules. During the hearing the state government informed the court that a meeting was called by the Additional Chief Secretary on October 6, a day after the high court order to apprise the stakeholders about the order of the court as well as certain guidelines earlier issued.
Further it was said that additional meetings are likely to be conducted and thus additional time was sought to file an affidavit. To which the court said “We deem it appropriate to grant some more time to the state government to take further steps. As such we permit the Additional Chief Secretary UDD Department to conduct a second meeting within four weeks and file response within 6 weeks".
Case Title: RAMESH NAIK L v STATE OF KARNATAKA
Case No: WP 10674/2022