Mumbai: Despite various measures undertaken by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), there is no stopping in the rise of stray dogs’ population in the city. At present, there are more than one lakh stray dogs across the city.
According to civic officials, more than 2.80 lakh stray dogs have been sterilised and immunised since 1998 with the help of NGOs at the cost of Rs 10 crore. However, there are still more than one lakh stray dogs, which have not been sterilised, roaming on city roads. The civic body plans to spend further Rs 15.56 crore to sterilise 1.02 lakh stray dogs for next three years (April 1017-March 2020).
According to dog census carried out in January 2014, out of 95,172 dogs existing then, 25,933 stray dogs were not sterilised. Of them 14,671 were male and 11,262 were female. Taking into account the dog reproduction rate, the number of stray dogs in the city presently could be around one lakh, says the civic data.
“To control the stray dog population, the Animal Welfare Board of India has directed to sterilise 30 per cent of dogs. Considering this, more than 30,000 dogs should be sterilised yearly by keeping a target of 1.02 lakh stray dogs in next three years,” said a senior civic official.
In 2016, due to regular services of dog-catching vehicles and appointment of two new NGOs, 11,929 dog sterilisation surgeries were carried out. We plan to increase the number up to 32,000 by appointing new additional NGOs, he added.
The BMC has appointed six NGOs — Welfare of Stray Dogs (Mahalaxmi), Bombay Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Parel), In Defence of Animals (Deonar), Ahimsa (Malad), Utkarsh Star Mitra Mandal (Mulund) and Universal Animal Welfare Society (Malad) — in seven civic administrative zones to sterilise dogs. They charge Rs 600-1200 per dog for sterilisation.