Wednesday, November 16, 2022

No fine can be imposed for feeding stray dogs: Supreme Court modifies Bombay High Court order

The Supreme Court on Wednesday modified an order of the Bombay High Court that had directed authorities to impose fines on citizens who feed stray dogs in Nagpur [Swati Sudhirchandra Chatterjee and ors v. Vijay Shankarrao Talewar and ors].

The Bench of Justices Sanjiv Khanna and JK Maheshwari said that it is permissible to feed stray dogs without causing a nuisance to the public and that no coercive steps like fines can be imposed for feeding the animals.

"Wherever there are human beings, there is bound to be a conflict of interest. There will be wrongs done by stray dogs as well, we have to be conscious of both. There may be other considerations...You cannot insist that people who feed dogs must adopt them." 


Last month, the Nagpur Bench of the Bombay High Court had directed authorities to impose a fine of not more than ₹200 on citizens who feed stray dogs on the roads and in public places in the city.

The High Court had noted that despite measures taken by the authorities, the menace of stray dogs had increased in the city because of the irresponsible behaviour of some citizens, who feed such dogs on the streets.

The Bench had stated that if these so-called friends of stray dogs are really interested in the protection and welfare of the strays, they must adopt them, take them home or at least put them up in dog shelter homes and bear all the expenses for their registration with municipal authorities and towards their maintenance, health and vaccination.

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