The Rs. 13-lakh specially outfitted truck uses hydraulic system to haul animals into It. has been funded by the Animal Welfare Board of India and the Marchig Animal Welfare Trust.
Quite contrary to W.H. Davies’s poem “Leisure”, stray animals in Tirupati have all the time to stand and stare. This happens to be a distinctive feature of this temple city where one can find stray cattle ruminating peacefully in the middle of the road completely oblivious to their surroundings and blaring horns.
Given that cows are considered sacred, Tirupati’s streets have quite a population of cattle untethered or unattended. Despite the municipal corporation’s efforts to steer them away and penalise their owners, the problem is a recurring one. Their special drives require forceful tethering of animals to a tractor and tugging them to the municipal cattle pound, often causing distress to them. In a bid to facilitate easier shifting of stray cattle and dogs, Tirupati-based NGO Animal Care Land has decided to introduce an ‘animal ambulance’ aimed at a hassle-free transportation of animals.
The ambulance, a specially outfitted truck costing Rs. 13 lakh, has been funded by the Animal Welfare Board of India and the Marchig Animal Welfare Trust of Scotland. It uses a hydraulic system to haul animals into its stalls and can also be used for shifting stray dogs.
“Stray cattle have been creating problems including obstruction of traffic in Tirupati. With the help of the ambulance, we can transport animals easily without causing harm to them. Besides, neglected strays, which have suffered injuries or are suffering from diseases, can be shifted for medical care,” said N.V. Srikanth Babu, founder of Animal Care Land.
Mr. Babu said the ambulance would be flagged off by Municipal Corporation of Tirupati Commissioner V. Vinaychand in a few days. “Deployment of such vehicles will go a long way in addressing stray animal issues across various municipalities. In addition, surgeries, if any, required for animals will be performed in coordination with Sri Venkateswara Veterinary University (SVVU) in Tirupati,” he added. The helpline number for the animal ambulance is 9440567737.
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