The effect of currency ban has hit those running shelter homes for animals in Noida, Ghaziabad and Delhi. The owners complained the move has left the animals starving as cash crunch doesn’t allow them to buy food.
Geeta Seshamani, co-founder of Friendicoes, which runs animals shelters in Delhi, says pets are suffering as much as humans. “In hospital for humans, the government has allowed use of old notes. For animal hospitals, it is a grey area. The government should do something about it,” Seshamani said.
House of Stray Animals, an NGO at sector 134 in Noida, is going through a major crisis due to lack of cash.
“On November 9 and 10, we had to literally beg the shop owners to lend us some bread to feed the animals. They were getting very cranky and aggressive because of hunger,” said Sanjay Mahapatra, founder of the NGO.
Mahapatra started House of Stray Animals eight years ago in sector 134 with around 20 dogs. Currently, there are over 125 dogs and two monkeys at the shelter.
Mahapatra said that he appealed to residents to donate to the shelter home in kind and not cash. A private bread manufacturing company finally came to his rescue on November 11.
“The company has agreed to supply us bread every day which we will feed the dogs. Though our requirement is 150 packets of bread, the company is providing us with 70-75 packets every day and we are extremely grateful to them,” said the Noida resident. He said that his daily expense on food for animals is Rs2,500.
Similarly in Ghaziabad, animal activists are managing on credit from the local shopkeepers.
“I have been feeding 15-20 dogs in my locality daily and buying biscuits for them every day for the past 10 years. Since we do not have cash anymore, the shop owner has agreed to supply it for the next 10-15 days on credit,” said Saurabh Gupta, a resident of Raj Nagar and an officer at People For Animals, an animal welfare organisation.
He spends Rs 250 per day on feeding biscuits to the canine in his locality.
It took them two days to arrange cash.
“One of our staff members stood in a queue the entire day at the post office to get cash for feeding the animals at our shelter,” said Sumathi Iyer, who runs a shelter home for stray animals at Raj Nagar Extension.
Her shelter home houses 66 cows, 45 dogs and seven equines since the past five years. The daily expense on food is about Rs1,000 per day.
But some like Delhi-based animal rights activist, Sonia Ghosh, were lucky. Ghosh, who feeds 350 dogs daily, says she is yet to face any problem buying food.
“I have already stocked up, as I usually do, for a month. People who buy daily from stores, they might be facing problems,” Ghosh, a resident of Vasant Kunj, said. She is, however, having problems in paying her staff.
With HTC inputs