On 21st September 2014, our President Salim Charania received a call from Ms.Christina & Ms.Bridget, animal lovers that a Dairy Farm Owner had neglected to feed a calf and also provide medical treatment to it at his tabela at Dahisar which had resulted in the death of the calf. They also informed Salim that an employee (Suresh) had kicked the calf and and dragged it along by a rope. The owner (Azhar) informed them that the calf was ailing for 2-3 days but had not been provided medical attention. Their appeals to treat the calf humanely was ignored by the employee and their offer to get the calf treated by a vet was also ignored by the owner (Azhar). As a result of the neglect, the calf died. The duo then approached the Dahsir East Police Station for filing an FIR u/s. 428 of the IPC and 11(1)(a) of PCA. However the police authorities were not co-operative and refused to entertain their demand for the same. The activists spent over 3 hours convincing the cops to register an FIR but to no avail.
Salim reached the venue at 12 Midnight and after lot of argument and persuasion, he was able to convince the police authorities that cruelty had been perpetrated resulting in the death of the calf. To charge the culprits under IPC or PCA, a Post Mortem of the calf would be required for which purpose the police are required to give a Memo to the SPCA. However in the absence of undisputable evidence that the beating and lack of medical attention had caused the death of the calf, the police authorities refused to provide a PM Memo. They however, agreed, after lot of argument, to charge the owner and his helpers (3 persons) under the LAC. All three culprits were booked u/s.119 of the Bombay Police Act and fined Rs.2500/- each, Total = 7500 The LAC Nos are 3193, 3194 and 3195.
While it would have been ideal to have the FIR registered under sections of the IPC and PCA, the circumstances of the case were such that charges could be filed u/s.119 of the BPA. Ms.Christina and Ms.Bridget were unhappy with this turn of events and accused Salim of being sympathetic to the tabela owner. They were of the opinion that a FIR could have been registered under the IPC & PCA. However Salim had settled for a lesser section and only fine because both Salim and the tabela owner belonged to the same religion.
This is a very shocking and undesirable occurence. Senior activists resorting to baseless allegations based on unsubstantiated considerations without understanding the merits of the case causes damage to the animal welfare movement. It breaks the spirt of genuine animal welfare activists who have taken upon the task of providing relief and succor to animals as their life's mission without consideration of their health, safety and comfort.
Our Team : Salim, Christina, Bridget, Jay, Bharatbhai, Yash Sawla, Shama & Neha
Sections applied : 119 of Bombay Police Act - Cruelty to Animals
Lessons Learnt : (a) Merits of the case to be understood well before demanding FIR under certain laws
(b) Baseless & unsubstantiated allegations weaken the animal welfare movement and should be avoided at all costs.