Registered with the Registrar of Newspapers for India under R.N.I 53640/91

Vol. XXXII No. 24, April 1-15, 2023

Our Readers Write

Stray dogs menace

‘Four-year-old boy mauled to death by stray dogs in Hyderabad.’ ‘Chased by stray dogs, 55-year-old woman riding pillion, dies in Chennai.’ ‘Stray dogs kill two brothers in national capital in span of three days.’

The above incidents occurred in a span of a month. Such incidents are not new and seem to take place periodically. How long will this continue?

When action is taken against stray dogs (an action which unfortunately is not conscionable), dog lovers rise in protest. A few years ago, in response to the stray dog menace in Porur, the civic authorities killed about 50 stray dogs and buried them. Dog lovers raised a hue and cry and held protests and demonstrations in the town. Nice to know that some people are so compassionate that they consider the inhumane act of killing 50 stray dogs comparable to the annihilation of a few million people.

About a year or so ago, IIT Madras took action against stray dogs on the IIT campus since they were attacking deer (and in some cases even killing them). Again dog lovers raised a hue and cry and even filed a case in court. Perhaps dogs have ‘friends’ and ‘rights’ but not deer. Is this animal unworthy of our attention?

I am just curious to know whether the stray-dog incidents mentioned above concern dog lovers or not. Do they think this is an issue that can and should be addressed by them? Or is it ‘beyond their scope’?

What can be done? The ‘solution’ is well known and not at all difficult to implement: just neuter the stray dogs. This is just what the Greater Chennai Corporation recently did. The civic body (may be in response to the pillion incident) caught and neutered 500 stray dogs in the city.

The lifespan of a dog is 10 – 13 years while some live up to 20 years. There is no reason why the neutering of dogs could not have been done years ago. If so, we would not have had the incidents mentioned above. At least in Chennai a good beginning has been made. Let us complete the task.

May I request dog lovers to work with GCC and help and assist the civic body and neuter all the stray dogs in the city with an easily identifiable collar. This will serve as a small measure of assurance that the issue is being addressed.

B. Gautham
137 Wallajah Road
Chennai 600 002

An interesting correspondence

A friend of mine (Samir Pathak, based in Pune) who is an avid historian, shared the below extract from Newton’s correspondence.

I am sharing this since it pertains to the first mint presses (presumably) sent from England to Fort St George.

I wonder if the original presses sent by Newton have survived somewhere in the Fort or anywhere else in the city? They would look something like the picture below.

– N. Balaji

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