Street Dogs Have Right To Food And Citizens Have Right To Feed says Justice Midha

Today is a historic day and a day of jubilation for both the stray dogs as well as their caregivers. A single-judge bench of the Delhi High Court of Justice JR Midha issued guidelines for feeding stray dogs. Given below are some of his observations and directions:

1 Community dogs (stray/street dogs) have the right to food and citizens have the right to feed community dogs

2 Every dog is a territorial being, and therefore, the street dogs have to be fed and tended to at places within their territory

3 Feeding of the community dogs have to be done at areas designated by the AWBI (Animal welfare Board of India) in consultation with Resident Welfare Associations or Municipal Corporation.

4 The bodies (AWBI, RWA, Municipal Corporation) have to be conscious of the fact that dogs are territorial being, hence they should keep in mind the fact that "community dogs live in 'packs' and care should be taken to see that each pack ideally has different designated areas for feeding even if that means designating multiple areas in a locality.

5 All Law enforcement authorities shall ensure that no harassment or hindrance is caused to the person feeding street dog at the designated feeding spot

6 Animals have a right under law to be treated with compassion, respect and dignity. Animals are sentient creatures with an intrinsic value. Therefore, protection of such beings is the moral responsibility of each and every citizen including the governmental and non-governmental organisations.

7 The RWA as well as the dog feeders have to act in harmony with each other and not in a manner which shall lead to unpleasant circumstances in the colony.

8 AWBI shall ensure that every RWA (Resident Welfare Association) or Municipal Corporation (in case RWA is not available), shall have an Animal Welfare Committee, which shall be responsible for ensuring compliance of the provisions of the PCA Act and ensure harmony and ease of communication between caregivers, feeders or animal lovers and other residents.

9 Dogs have to be sterilized and vaccinated and returned to the same area and that the vaccinated and sterilized dogs cannot be removed by the Municipality.

10 If any of the street / community dogs is injured or unwell, it shall be the duty of the RWA to secure treatment for such dog by the vets made available by the Municipal Corporation and / or privately from the funds of the RWA.

11 Every RWA should form Guard and Dog partnerships and in consultation with the Delhi Police Dog Squad, the dogs can be trained to make them effective as guard dogs and yet friendly to those who live in the colony

12 The importance of street dogs in our community is of great significance. Being territorial animals, they live in certain areas and play the role of guards by protecting the community from the entry of outsiders or unknown people. If these are removed from a certain area, the new stray dogs will take their place

13 There is a need to spread awareness that even animals have a right to live with respect and dignity, hence AWBI shall carry out an awareness campaign in association with various Newspapers, Television, Radio Channels and Social Media platforms.

The Court has also constituted an implementation committee for the purpose of implementation of the guidelines. 

For further details kindly go on the link below: 

The guideline is very scientific and practical as it is implementable. It is also very unique as it's prime focus is welfare of stray dogs. Another unique feature is its involvement of RWA in the welfare of colony dogs. They have been asked to provide treatment to sick and injured dog from their funds. 

These guidelines will surely bring in people's participation and create more caregivers. This has opened a new beginning for our furry friends. A beginning which promises love, compassion and kindness.....

We feel proud of our judiciary and our honourable judge Justice Midha will always be remembered for his foresight, vision and justice........he has proved that welfare of community animals is essential for the welfare of human welfare. 

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