Toeing the lines of the Mumbai counterparts, the Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation (MBMC) has decided to include stray cats in the Animal Birth Control (ABC) programme under which only dogs were sterilized.
In accordance with a notification issued by the Commissionerate of Animal Husbandry, the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) has granted permission to civic bodies for the sterilization of stray cats, last year.
After an extended round of delays the civic administration has finally shortlisted an agency to run the sterilization clinic at Shire gaothan in Uttan for the next two years. With a price tag of Rs. 1,017 per dog and Rs 727 per cat, the contract involves pick-up of strays, sterilize them, administration of anti-rabies vaccine, post-operative care and releasing them back to their territory.
“The task would not only be carried out in a more specialized and result-oriented manner. Apart from the regular sterilization work, the agency will also shoulder additional responsibilities of nursing the injured strays and also conduct autopsies in case of their deaths. CCTV monitoring of dog sterilization would also be a key part of the project.“ said, Dr. Vikram Niratle, who heads MBMC’s veterinary wing. As many as 350 dogs were being sterilized at the facility per month.
However, the shoestring budget amounting Rs. 20 lakh which was earmarked for the project in the end dried up soon. “This year the budgetary allocations have been hiked to Rs. 40 lakh.” said Dr. Niratle.
Cats can breed two to three times a year and give birth to at least four to five kittens. This has led to an alarming rise in the number of cats. However, there is no data available on the number of strays in the twin-city.
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