Finally, after seven years of the formation of SAS Nagar district, the municipal corporation (MC) has finalised dog bylaws wherein for keeping a dog, its owner would have to pay Rs. 250 per annum.
The MC has invited objections within 30 days, following which the bylaws will be notified. At present, the town has nearly 3,500 pet dogs who are being kept without any rules and regulations.
As per the finalised draft, owner of every dog, who is kept or brought within the MC limits, within seven days of its arrival or before April 1 each year would have to get the dog registered at the MC office. The owner would have to pay Rs. 250 annually as registration fee. If the fee is paid on May 1, the owners would have to pay a registration fee of Rs. 350.
On registration, the MC would provide the owner with a metal batch having engraved the name and address of the owner. The owner would have to make his dog wear the batch at all times.
The draft reads that any dog without collar or other marks distinguishing them as private property and not wearing the MC batch in accordance with the clause, if found loitering on the streets or beyond the owner's house may be detained and a fine of Rs. 50 per day would be imposed. After crossing the maximum fine of up to Rs. 250, the dog will not be released to the owner.
On conviction of the dog owner, under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 (59 of 1960), of an offence of cruelty to a dog, the court may order him to be disqualified for keeping a dog and for holding or obtaining a dog licence for any period. The licence already issued to the owner shall be suspended. The owner can appeal against the order in the manner as against a conviction. The penalty for failing to comply with such order shall be Rs. 200.
However, when contacted, MC commissioner Uma Shanker Gupta said, “The draft has been finalised and we have called for objections from residents within 30 days, following which the bylaws will be notified. We are hopeful of implementing them soon.”