Villagers join Animal Aid: dog slayer arrested!
Early this week we received a call on our helpline reporting the slaying of a mother street dog by sword. The caller said that he and several other distraught villagers who had seen the killing wanted to take the case to the police.
Myself (Animal Aid co-founder, Jim Myers) and compounder Vinod immediately drove to the site of the crime at Hiran Magri while two news reporters reached at the same time.
We were met by four village women and men who were grief stricken by the gruesome killing. They told us that this same man, a neighbor, had previously poisoned a dog but they hadn’t known who to turn to for help at that time.
The women led us to the body of the dead dog, horribly sliced on the side and on the head. Two women came carrying the mother’s four orphaned puppies.
The women’s love for the mother and her pups was apparent…they all told stories about feeding and taking care of them.
The four villagers accompanied us in our ambulance to the Hiran Mangri police station as they had no conveyance of their own.
We met S.H.O. Dinesh Chandra to whom the villagers described what had happened. We guided him to the relevant animal protection laws and he called Inspector Mahipal Singh from a nearby thana who had arrested someone in another animal cruelty case some months back to confirm the laws and action required.
Though he was reluctant at first to take on the case, and even told us that the police don’t have the resources to solve crimes against humans let alone animals, the SHO seemed to be effected when we began talking about the link between violence to animals and violence against women and children. I asked him to imagine the village women who actually live next to such a man that would take up a sword and slash to death an innocent animal who they have cared for so lovingly. The S.H.O. shook his head seriously and ordered the first information report (FIR) to be registered.
The village women and men, illiterate, affixed their thumb print to the FIR statement.
Photos were taken of the crime scene and of the dog’s body which clearly revealed a wound made from a sword.
Back at the station the S.H.O. ordered for the immediate arrest of the killer.
Because the police were short of a vehicle, we drove the officer in our ambulance back to the crime scene and to the house of the accused. The man was called out from his house and the villagers identified him. He was shocked to see the police and confessed immediately. He was put in the back of our ambulance with the body of the dog he had killed along with the officer and taken to the police station.
At the end of the day we stood saddened by the heartbreaking killing of the mother dog, and also deeply touched by the courage of the villagers to go to the police with us. Villagers are generally very wary of police interaction, and so it spoke of their deep feeling for the dog that they so urgently decided to go to the police. We are thankful to S.H.O. Dinesh Chandra and officer Ranjeet Singh for acting dutifully on behalf of the slain mother dog.