Litigant says animals are starving because dining had been prohibited in hotels/restaurants
A public interest litigation (PIL) petition has been filed in the Madras High Court seeking a direction to the State government to provide food and water to stray animals during the lockdown to fight COVID-19. The litigant stated that the stray animals, generally dependant on food waste from hotels and restaurants, are now suffering without food because the government had prohibited dining and permitted only takeaway service.
When the case was listed for admission before the summer vacation Bench of Justices Anita Sumanth and Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy on Wednesday, the judges directed the counsel for the petitioner V.E. Shiva, founder of Mothers of Animal Welfare Trust, Chennai, to come up with some suggestions on the modalities that the government could follow to provide food and water to the stray animals.
The judges told the counsel that it was not sufficient for a public interest litigant to bring an issue to the notice to the court and that he should also come with some constructive ideas and suggestions on how the stray animals could be fed. Such suggestions would help the court in issuing appropriate directions to the Animal Husbandry department, they said. The judges asked Government counsel R. Neelakandan also to take instructions on the issue.
When the government counsel pointed out that all cases related to COVID-19 must be listed before the first Division Bench led by Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee as per a notification issued by the High Court Registry, Justice Sumanth said her Bench wants the litigant and the government to make some headway on the issue before the case could be eventually transferred to the first Bench. She wanted the suggestions to be placed by Thursday.
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