Bombay High Court: The Division Bench of S.J. Kathawalla and Milind N. Jadhav, JJ., addressed a matter in which a dispute revolved with regard to the feeding of dogs in the society complex.

Petitioners sought the following reliefs:

  • Court may issue writ of mandamus to the Commissioner, Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation and Managing Director, CIDCO jointly and severally being the respondents 8 and 9 to identify and confirm seven feeding stations for seven groups of dogs in their movement territory, situated under the boundary of total 50 acres area of respondent.
  • Issue directions/writs to the Registrar of Companies/respondent 2 to adjudicate and decide the letters of petitioners filed against a circular thereby deciding the legality and validity of the said circular viz calling upon the exorbitant and illegal amount of Rs 5,000 as a fine from the petitioners/feeders/caregivers of the stray dogs.
  • Issue the writ of mandamus and/or appropriate writs/directions to the Commissioner of Police, Navi Mumbai, being Respondent 18 to monitor and maintain the law and order situation for the better compliance of the orders passed by this Court and/or while and after demarcation of seven feeding stations for the dogs in the said area of Respondent 17 – SEL, thereby peaceful and continuous feedings of dogs may be acted upon by the dog feeders/interested residents of Respondent 17
  • This Court be pleased to issue the writ of mandamus and/or any appropriate writs/directions to the Principal Secretary, Ministry of Urban Development Department/Ministry of Animal Husbandary the Respondent.5 herein to comply with the directions dated 04/10/2016 issued by Supreme Court in the matter of Animal Welfare Board of India V/s. People for elimination of Stray Trouble and the Notification No.2016-/275/- (placed as Exhibit A-37) dated 11/11/2016 issued by Respondent No. thereby constituting the Dog Monitoring Committee to take care of health, wellbeing including vaccination, sterilization and counting of the stray dogs in the premises of the Respondent 17-SEL;
  • This Court may be pleased to issue the writ of mandamus and/or any appropriate writs/directions to Municipal Commissioner / the Respondent No.8 to take appropriate, urgent and effective steps for spreading awareness such as issuing notice and directions to housing societies, housing complex for implementation of ABC programs and animal laws;
  • Court may be pleased to issue the Writ of Mandamus and/or any appropriate Writs/Directions to the Respondent 11 / Director General of Police to issue appropriate Circular/Directions in its department, to adopt proactive approach towards the implementation of animal protection laws etc., for taking appropriate actions as per the complaints/advisory of AWBI, Dog Monitoring Committee and individuals etc.;
  • Be pleased to issue appropriate Writs/Directions to Respondent 3 – Animal Welfare Board of India to issue appropriate advisory / circular to all the Government departments as per the Office Memorandum dated 26th May, 2006 of Ministry of Personal, Public Grievances and Pensions, Department of Personal and Training of Govt. of India.

Court’s Decision

High Court noted the bitterness between the parties which appeared to be very intense in view of one group of members wanting to feed the dogs inside the complex and the other group making a grievance that the same would create a nuisance for the 5000 residents in the complex.

In Court’s opinion, the present matter needs to be resolved amicably between the members concerned/residents and only in case, the matter does not get resolved the Court will intervene.

Bench appointed Mr Nausher Kohli, Advocate as Amicus Curiae to assist the Court in resolving/deciding the above disputes between the parties.

Matter stood over to 3-1-2022. [Sharmila Sankar v. Union of India, WP No. 9513 of 2021, decide don 29-12-2021]

Advocates before the Court:

Mr. Anjani Kumar Singh with Ms. Sneha Jain i/by Siddh Vidya and Associates, for Petitioners.

Mr. D.P.Singh, for Respondent Nos.1 and 2.

Ms. R.P.Ojha, for Respondent No.3.

Mr. Rupesh Dubey i/by Mr. S.V.Marne, for Respondent No.8. Mr. Mukesh Gupta for Respondent Nos.15 and 16.

Mr. P.G.Sawant, AGP, for State.

Mr. Aditya Pratap, ,for Respondent No.17.

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