It’s a dog’s world at Technopark
Even as the number of techies in Technopark is set to expand what with the commissioning of Phase III, the population of stray dogs that have made the campus their home too is increasing, it seems. No wonder techies have been complaining about the canine menace in Technopark for a while now. The issue has lately become a hot point of discussion on campus, particularly after the recent incident in which a young school girl was attacked by a rabid stray dog in Poonthura.
“The stray dogs have become quite a menace, especially in the evenings when there are not many people around on campus. More so for two-wheeler users like myself. Every evening, inevitably there will be a few dogs waiting to chase you, fangs barred, as you drive down the road to the main entrance,” says Anjana Gopinath, who works for an MNC in Nila building.
“In fact, some of the dogs are quite ferocious. For example, last week, we witnessed, what appeared to be, a fight among a pack of dogs, in the bushes near the Nila parking lot. There was a lot of snarling and yowling. It was scary. As a result some of us were unable to access our vehicles parked nearby,” she adds.
Many techies have similiar stories to tell about being chased by dogs while driving their vehicles or encountering packs of them while walking home to their hostels from work, particularly in the evenings near the back gate of the campus, and so on. “Recently, I saw about 10 of them lying in the parking lot opposite the M-Squared building as I drove into work at around 8.30 a.m.,” says a techie.
According to techies, stray dogs have been given free rein on campus. But most of the dogs seem to have a liking for the many car parks on campus, especially that of the Nila building. “We think it’s because California (an alley outside campus where many techies go to grab a bite) and a few of the paying guest accommodation is adjacent to or near the parking lot and hence the dogs have access to lots of garbage,” says Arundas M.G. The dogs can also be found near the forecourt of Bhavani building, in the forested areas of campus and lolling in the open amphitheatre too.
As of now there has been no untoward incident with regards to the dogs. “But its an accident waiting to happen, particularly for two-wheelers,” warns a concerned techie, who has started an online discussion group on the issue. Arundas explains: “The danger is when you suddenly come upon a dog while riding your bikes/scooters through campus. The roads itself are full of curves and often its not possible to see ahead. If the dogs run out, particularly from the forested areas bordering the roads, it may not always be possible to swerve at the last minute.”
Anjana adds: “I’ve not seen anybody provoking the dogs. But we always have to approach them with caution. For there’s no knowing how ferocious the dogs will be, especially when they are in heat or are pregnant – which many of them seem to be - or when they are protecting a litter.”
However, the techies can’t seem to find a solution for the issue, with most of them divided in their opinion on whether its an issue for Park authorities to handle or its a Corporation issue. “Whatever be, a pro-active, humane solution has to be figured out soon. May be the solution is to set up a pound in the city,” says Arundas.