Kashmir Indepth

Canines’ terror: Kashmir reports 5000-7000 dog bite cases annually

Raouf Dar

Srinagar Mar 17 (KINS): Canines continue to unleash terror as Kashmir reports 5000-7000 dog bite cases annually.

Official figures accessed by Kashmir Indepth News Service (KINS) reveal that 5000-7000 dog bite cases are reported annually at Srinagar’s SMHS Hospital. Around 60,000 people have been bitten by dogs for the last 10 years in Kashmir.

Around 6802, 6399, 6984 and 4697 dog bite cases were reported during 2017-2018, 2018-2019, 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 respectively.

There has been rapid increase in dog population over the years with people blaming the government especially Srinagar Municipal Corporation for their failure to curb their increase.

The stray dogs have created a terror in many areas of the valley. Bashir Ahmad, a resident of Rainawari said, “After the sun sets in we are not able to move out of our homes due to the unleashing reign of terror posed by stray dogs in our locality. I even prefer to offer morning and evening prayer at home.”

Adil Ahmad, a resident of Dalgate said authorities have failed to curb the growing population of dogs. “You will find stray dogs everywhere. Nobody is concerned about this dog menace. Our children are scared to go to school,” he said.

At the Jawahar Lal Nehru Memorial Hospital (JLNM), Rainwari, the attendants claimed that dogs were on the prowl inside the hospital premises during the mornings and evening hours.

“Yesterday late evening, I moved out to procure the medicine for my ailing father. But, when I stepped out of the hospital, over half a dozen dogs chased me. I ran back to the hospital till three attendants accompanied me to a medical shop,” said Mohammad Ashraf, who was accompanying his father at the JLNM Hospital.

The Shri Maharaja Hari Singh Hospital (SMHS), Srinagar, shares the same tale, where the dogs often chase the attendants, who bring in food for the patients. “Dozens of stray dogs inside the premises of the hospital have been scaring the masses. We don’t dare to move out of the hospital building due to the reigning threat unleashed by the stray dogs here,” said an attendant, Mushtaq Ali, who was accompanying his elder brother.

The situation is the same at tertiary care

hospital SKIMS Soura where street dogs could be spotted roaming inside the hospital premises. Same is the case with Kashmir University.

Meanwhile a senior official of SMC said, the authorities have taken several measures to control the dog population. “Dog sterilization was halted for some time due to Covid. Besides, our request to people is not to throw any waste on roads which attract the dogs in those areas,” he added. (KINS)

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