Union Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi is facing flak for her empathy towards dogs and a Kerala businessman on Wednesday even sought legal action against her, after a dog attack killed a 65-year-old woman in Kerala recently.
Maneka Gandhi had held the victim responsible for her own death. While speaking to the news magazine, The Week, she said, “What has happened to the woman is sad. But it is foolish to kill all the stray dogs in that specific area for this reason,” adding “also, I feel the woman must have been carrying some meat with her while going to the beach. Dogs don’t chase you simply.”
Kochuouseph Chittilapally, the businessman who has led several protests in major cities of the state against the stray dog menace, told the media that it was shameful that Gandhi holds the portfolio of women and child welfare.
Chittilapally said: “A case should be registered against her and the media should play their role by boycotting her. None has any clue of why she behaves like this and the residents of Puluvilla where the dogs devoured the lady should see that dangerous dogs are shot dead.”
There was a huge furore in the state after the media reported that the Chairman of the Animal Welfare Board of India, R.M. Kharb, planned action against the state government’s decision to cull ferocious dogs.
Kharb had referred to a Supreme Court directive to point out the futility of the order.
On Tuesday the State Local Self Government Minister K.T.Jaleel had said that the government had ordered administering of medical doses to all ferocious dogs for culling, apart from taking measures to sterilise the animals.
According to the government more than one lakh people in the state have been bitten by stray dogs this year and Kerala leads the rest of the country in the sale of anti-rabies vaccine.