Stray cattle on streets further aggravating traffic situation in Pune city

Updated on Nov 25, 2022 12:29 AM IST

If the growing number of vehicles coupled with poor management is behind the traffic chaos in the city, cattle and stray animals roaming freely on the streets have only added to the mess

Goats near Babajan chowk, Camp on Thursday. (Ravindra Joshi/HT PHOTO)
Goats near Babajan chowk, Camp on Thursday. (Ravindra Joshi/HT PHOTO)

If the growing number of vehicles coupled with poor management is behind the traffic chaos in the city, cattle and stray animals roaming freely on the streets have only added to the mess.

While the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) decided to shift all cattle sheds outside city limits nearly a decade ago, the civic body has failed to execute the plan largely due to opposition from cattle shed owners. According to the PMC’s latest survey, there are around 600 cattle sheds in the city. The owners of these cattle sheds take the cattle outside for grazing purposes due to which, they cause hindrance in an already deteriorating traffic situation. Veterinary officer, PMC, Sarika Funde, said, “The work of shifting cattle sheds is handled by the veterinary department while action against stray cattle on the roads is taken by the anti-encroachment department. We are trying to shift the cattle sheds.” The problem is even more severe in areas such as Sahakar nagar, Market yard and Pune cantonment. Head of the anti-encroachment department, Madhav Jagtap, said, “Usually, we would take action against stray cattle obstructing traffic. I would immediately issue a circular to take action against the cattle. There are more cattle in the cantonment area. Ideally, action against such cattle should be taken by the cantonment areas. Our department catches hold of such cattle and hands over to the Panjrapol organisation for taking care of the animals.”

Punekar Sangeeta Kulkarni said, “The cattle problem in the city has increased. While driving, particularly women get scared of cattle roaming around or sitting on roads. On the one hand, we claim that Pune is a metropolitan city while on the other, cattle, pigs and other stray animals are found roaming on the roads.”

Lokesh Jangawali, a dairy businessman said, “Traditionally, we are in the dairy business. While cattle sheds should be relocated, it is not an easy job to actually do so.”

Another cattle shed owner said, “When we are settled in one locality, it is not fair to tell us to relocate someplace else. We are living in one place and shifting the cattle to another place which is not an easy situation to manage. Milk is the basic need of every citizen.”

A PMC officer on condition of anonymity said, “It is true that it’s the state-level policy to have cattle sheds outside the city limits. There are many health issues as many illnesses can pass from animals to human beings. The areas surrounding cattle sheds tend to stink. The PMC had allotted land at Mundhwa for relocation of cattle sheds but that too has become part of the city now.”

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Sunday, November 27, 2022
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