HC seeks forest dept response on plea against ban on pets on Pune hills

The Bombay Excessive Court docket not too long ago directed the state Forest Division to reply to a writ petition filed by two Pune residents and pet lovers difficult its resolution to ban individuals from bringing their pet canines on leash to town’s common hills/tekdis.

A division bench of Justice S J Kathawalla and Justice Milind N Jadhav on March 15 handed an order on the plea filed by Sharmila Karve and Pallavi Kulkarni, pet lovers and house owners from Pune, difficult the January 2021 resolution of the Forest Division that prohibited entry of pet canines on the hills in Pune as per Maharashtra Forest Guidelines, 2014.

They argued by advocates Kalyani Tulankar, Ajinkya Udane and Tanaji Mhatugade that the petitioners reside in flats together with their households and pets, whereby the pets wouldn’t have enough area to stroll round. Pet canines are taken round their place of residence for every day walks and are frequently taken to Vetal Tekdi behind ILS Legislation school, Pune, for brisk walks and train.

The petitioners submitted that on January 4, 2021, they got here throughout a information report and have been shocked to know that the forest division officers had introduced prohibition of pet canines from being taken on a stroll on the hills in Pune.

As per the petitioners’ attorneys, the forest division had issued undated notice giving causes for the choice, which included that the hills of Pune are house to peacocks, hares, snakes, birds and different animals and that residents taking pet canines for morning walks is harmful for different birds and animals as pet animals might trigger illness amongst such ‘wild fauna’ residing on the hills.

The plea challenged rule 9 (1) (i) of the Maharashtra Forest Guidelines, 2014, that prohibited trespassing of pet animals from reserved and guarded forests and argued the identical was invalid because the state authorities had no powers to ban acts aside from these enlisted within the Indian Forest Act, subsequently the impugned rule was not relevant to pet canines on leash.

After listening to submissions, the court docket directed the forest division to file an affidavit in reply to the petition and allowed Pune Municipal Company (PMC) to be joined as occasion respondent to the case.

In search of the presence of the involved officer of the PMC earlier than it, the court docket posted additional listening to to March 23.

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