In a welcome ruling, the Delhi High Court has said that it is the duty of every Resident Welfare Association or the Municipal Corporation to ensure that stray dogs in the region have access to food and water in the absence of dog feeders.
Justice JR Midha also ruled that stray dogs have the right to food and people have the right to feed them. This means, nobody can stop anyone from feeding strays unless they are endangering them or infringing on their rights.
Community dogs (stray/street dogs) have the right to food and citizens have the right to feed community dogs… Any person having compassion for stray dogs can feed the dogs at their private entrance/porch/driveway of their house or any other place not shared with other residents. No person can restrict the other from feeding of dogs, until and unless it is causing harm or harassment to that other person.
-Delhi High Court
The High Court also issued some guidelines regarding the feeding of stray dogs, such as designating a particular area for their feeding and ensuring that these areas were within the dog’s territory. The court also ruled that Municipal Corporations and/or the RWAs should have Animal Welfare Committees to make sure the ruling is implemented.
The court also said that if street dogs are unwell, then it fell on the shoulders of the RWA to secure the treatment of such dogs by vets made available by the Municipal Corporations. It also said that it was the duty of the police to make sure that nobody caused any harassment or hindrance to these activities.
This is truly awesome of the High Court to ensure the safety and welfare of these animals.