Irked by questions from denizens, Amala Akkineni leaves in a huff, not before appealing not to harm dogs

Amala Akkineni, who attended the session to educate people about the Community Dog Management Programme, urged the people to not harm dogs


HYDERABAD: Amala Akkineni, the Founder and Chairperson of Blue Cross, an animal welfare organisation based out of Hyderabad, was left irked by the questions catapulted at her by denizens at an interactive session on Saturday. The usually calm and composed Amala Akkineni was forced to leave the session after a downpour of questions from distressed dog-lovers.

An interactive session on stray dog management was organised by United Federation of Residents Welfare Association in coordination with Blue Cross and the veterinary wing of GHMC in Masab Tank. The event was organised owing to the tragic death of a four-year-old by stray dogs.

Amala Akkineni, who attended the session to educate people about the Community Dog Management Programme, urged the people to not harm dogs and use the right resources to fight off the menace. She said that in community dog management there would be a specific group in each neighbourhood that would keep an eye on the dogs, inform GHMC about unsterilised or unvaccinated dogs and inform authorities to take care of them.

An animal lover herself, Amala Akkineni said that the relationship between humans and dogs dated back to over 50,000 years ago and due to rare incidents like this, all dogs shouldn’t be harmed. “Keep your calm, inform the authorities and help in vaccinating and sterilising dogs. If one person turns into a murderer, you do not doubt the entire humanity. Similarly, if one dog acts out of aggression, you should not turn against all dogs. Remember that dogs love humans. They protect us and we feed them,” Amala said.

Dr Vivekananda, the Assistant Director of Veterinary wing GHMC Khairatabad Zone said that the main reasons behind the menace was overpopulation of dogs, which was being controlled by Animal Birth Control (ABC) and rabies infection, which the Anti-Rabies Vaccination (ARV) drive tries to reduce.

While many were impressed by the measures that the GHMC was taking, many raised questions on their methods. Ruthvika Kavuru from an NGO called Youngistaan Foundation, said that few ground staff, who were coming to pick up dogs, did not bother documenting the pick up and many-a-times failed to drop the dogs back to where they called home. She also pointed out that sterilised dogs, who have a ‘V’ cut out on their ears and who did not need to be picked up, were also being taken away.

Another denizen claimed that he visited a GHMC dog shelter and witnessed that at least five dogs were being kept in a small cage and were being denied even water.

Some also argued that stray dogs should be adopted by pet lovers and the trend of owning foreign breed dogs should be eliminated. An animal activist said, “The vans in which they are forcibly and brutally taking away dogs, they should provide water and food to the dogs in the same vans.”

Unable to control the heat of the situation, the Blue Cross Chairperson left the session, promising to have such similar sessions in the future, to discuss and solve the long pertaining issue.

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