It may not entirely be in the line of duty, but some officials in Haryana could soon be counting the genital organs of sterilised dogs.
The numbers are important, because payment for a sterilisation scheme will depend on it. The move is part of a comprehensive scheme to control the population of stray dogs in the state, state government officials said.
Under the scheme, a Society for Stray Canine Birth Control will be set up. Officials of the society, which will include government functionaries and representatives of animal welfare NGOs and animal health officials, will set up inspection teams that will verify and count genital organs of the sterilised dogs.
The dogs will be sterilised by the state's animal husbandry department. The genital organs will be preserved in formalin solution for the society's inspection team to count and verify.
"The Society for Stray Canine Birth Control shall supervise and check the whole programme. An inspection team comprising officers of the society shall make regular inspection for verification and counting of genital organs of dogs sterilised by the animal husbandry department. On the basis of number of genital organs counted, the municipalities will release the payment to the department," an official spokesperson said.
The society will be headed by commissioners of municipal corporations, deputy commissioners and sub-divisional officers.
They will be supported by representatives from the public health department of the local authority, the animal welfare department, veterinarians, the district Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCAs) and other officials.
The scheme was approved by Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda recently following increasing complaints of stray dogs creating menace in the state.
Municipal authorities across Haryana have been directed to set up dog catching teams or engage private contractors to catch stray dogs and send them for sterilisation and immunisation against rabies.
The municipalities will arrange dog vans with ramps for the capture and transportation of stray dogs, along with two trained dog catchers.
The animal husbandry department will set up dog sterilisation centres, which will include minor operation theatres (OT) and post-operative recovery rooms for the canines.
"After sterilisation and immunisation, the dogs will be kept in kennels for post-operative care, feeding and management for the required period till the dog is fit for release. After fitness is established, the dogs will be released by the municipal authority concerned," an official of the animal husbandry department said.
The society is being set up for the sterilisation and anti-rabies immunisation of stray dogs, to control their population and decrease the incidence of deadly diseases like rabies.
Municipal authorities have been asked to set about surveying stray dogs in their respective areas.