ABCD programme in Kochi to resume in August

After a gap of three months, the Animal Birth Control for Dogs (ABCD) programme will resume in Kochi.

The programme, which began in 2015, came to a grinding halt after the lone veterinary surgeon left the job. When launched, the Kochi Corporation had engaged four veterinary surgeons. However, they left one after the other. Sonika Satish, the last veterinarian to leave, put in her papers in April this year.

Since its inception six years ago, around 7,000 dogs were neutered and vaccinated, which was a significant achievement for a civic body, said Dr. Satish.

The Corporation’s ABCD programme attains significance in the wake of reports of killing of street dogs in the neighbouring Thrikkakara municipality. The killing of dogs had invited protests from animal lovers. The issue took a new dimension with the Kerala High Court taking note of the developments and initiating legal action.

For the ABCD programme, dogs are picked up by animal catchers engaged by the civic body and taken to the animal care centre set up at Brahmapuram. After surgery, the animals are kept in captivity for a few days for observation. Later, they are released in the area from where they were picked up, according to civic authorities.

The drive had caught the attention of the city residents as it was launched at a time when complaints of stray dog attacks had increased in the city. Incidentally, the Supreme Court had appointed S. Siri Jagan, former judge of the Kerala High Court, to decide on awarding compensation to victims of street dog bites.

Corporation health standing committee chairman T.K. Ashraf said the ABCD programme would continue in the city. It was disrupted for a few months as the doctors engaged by the civic body had left, he said. Currently, three veterinarians have come forward for the job. Their applications were processed and the interviews conducted. All the three will be appointed on contract basis. The programme would resume by August 2, he added.

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Printable version | Sep 16, 2021 9:48:46 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/abcd-programme-in-kochi-to-resume-in-august/article35609990.ece

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