Animal husbandry dept says it has treated no animal for cancer since 2005

Updated on May 04, 2018 02:41 PM IST
In March, HT had reported, also based on RTI, that the government has not kept any record of deaths of humans due to cancer.
The animal husbandry department looks after cows, dogs and bitches; wildlife and birds are not its domain.(For representation)
The animal husbandry department looks after cows, dogs and bitches; wildlife and birds are not its domain.(For representation)
Hindustan Times, Faridkot | ByGagandeep Jassowal

Faridkot Eight years after animal husbandry departments in Hoshiarpur, Ludhiana and Faridkot admitted to treating animals, mostly dogs and bitches for cancer in 2010, their recent replies claim that they have never treated any. In both replies, the departments had responded to an application under the Right to Information Act, with the query asking for figures of animals treated with cancer since 2005.

The animal husbandry department looks after cows, dogs and bitches; wildlife and birds are not its domain.

In March, HT had reported, also based on RTI, that the government has not kept any record of deaths of humans due to cancer.

“The government is not registering animals with cancer to protect its image. I will approach the state information commission as the department is hiding information,” said Gurpreet Singh Chandbaja, president of Bhai Ghanaiya Cancer Roko Society, Faridkot, who had filed the RTI.

What is the anomaly

In case of Hoshiarpur, the office of the deputy director, animal husbandry, had said in 2010 that it treated 15 cases of cancer in bitches and 22 such cases in 2009-10. The department now says, in its April 10, 2018, reply, that no case of cancer in animals has been treated since 2005.

In Faridkot, the figure has again ‘miraculously reduced’ to zero from eight such cases that the department admitted to have treated in Chandbaja veterinary hospital, Faridkot.

In its previous RTI reply dated April 26, 2016, the office had admitted to treating 50 animals suffering from various types of cancer. In Ludhiana too, the figure has reduced from 46 animals (the majority being dogs) in its RTI reply on December 9, 2010, to saying that it has no records or documents available on the issue, in its April 24 reply.

Department evasive

Despite repeated attempts, HT could not contact state animal husbandry director Amarjeet Singh. Ludhiana animal husbandry deputy director Gurcharan Singh said, “We will check with the RTI dealing officer. There is a chance that they skipped looking at records of polyclinics where surgeries took place.” Hoshiarpur deputy director Kulbhushan Galhotra said, “I have only recently joined, but will look into the issue.”

Faridkot deputy director Gautam Parshad said, “We also have doubts about the information that has been handed out. I have issued a letter to all veterinary hospitals and sought records.”

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