CONSUMPTION OF stale chapattis that had gone poisonous led to the death of five cows, one calf, a bull and a couple of pigs, while more than a dozen animals were rendered seriously ill. The incident occurred at Jheelnagar slums in Piplani area this morning and enraged residents staged a road blockade at the bypass road in protest.
“The chapattis were about three days old leftovers from the food cooked by the Nandi Foundation possibly for the mid day meal scheme,’’ Piplani TI Rajnikant Shukla told the Hindustan Times. A local resident and accused in the matter, Baliram had brought the rotis to feed his pigs.
Baliram, who is a history sheeter of the area and reportedly a Bajrang Dal activist too, had dumped almost a trolley-load full of rotis on Saturday night on a piece of vacant land near the slums, police said.
However, in the morning, almost all animals of the area including the ill-fated cows began consuming the rotis. Onlookers said almost immediately half-a-dozen cows collapsed. Soon, a pig also collapsed while three more cows died on the spot after consuming the poisonous rotis. Another 10 to 12 more cows and other animals fell sick.
Residents and owners of the deceased and sick animals rushed to the spot and someone called the police too. Soon, police and district administration officials including ASP Dr G K Pathak, Govindpura CSP Shyamlal Yadav and SDM of the area reached the spot along with a team of BMC officials and veterinary doctors.
Meanwhile, enraged residents staged a road blockade on the bypass road at about 9.30 am demanding action against the accused and compensation for their lost livestock.
The protestors were also demanding an inquiry into how and where so many poisonous rotis had come from. Police and district administration officials had a tough time convincing the irate mob to clear the road blockade.
After more than an hour and an assurance to accept most demands of the residents, the road was finally cleared and traffic was able to move at about 11.15 am. Meanwhile, BMC officials collected some samples of the rotis and they were sent for scientific examination to the laboratory.
CSP Shyamlal Yadav said so far information about the persons whose cows died included Badri (two cows), Ramkishan (one cow), Bahadur (one cow) and Gulab Singh (one cow). Baliram’s two pigs also died, police said.
The veterinary doctors administered medicines and other treatment to the sick animals. Police have arrested Baliram and booked him under section 429. Further investigations are on in the matter.