The North Delhi Municipal Corporation today told the Delhi High Court that there were 81 unlicensed dairies in the areas under its jurisdiction and that action was taken against some of them by taking away their cattle.
The submission by the corporation was made before a bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar during the hearing of a PIL alleging violation of animal rights and laws in milk dairies in and around the national capital.
The civic body also told the court that only 18 licensed dairies existed in the area under its jurisdiction.
During the brief hearing, petitioner’s lawyer Gauri Maulekhi told the court that the number of unlicensed dairies might be higher than what the corporation was claiming.
The lawyer also urged the court to direct the corporation to strictly adhere to its registration and licensing policy.
However, as the stand of the other corporations and the Delhi government had not yet been filed, the bench decided to wait for their replies before passing any order.
The petition has alleged that the health and well-being of cattle were being severely compromised in dairies in Delhi’s municipal zones.
The PIL by Maulekhi, an animals rights activist, has alleged there was indiscriminate violation of animal rights and, due to lack of infrastructure, there is no proper space for animals who have to sit alternately.
“It’s not uncommon to inject these cattle with Oxytocin, a prescribed drug, to boost milk letdown and sometimes this is done 2-3 times a day,” the plea has claimed.
The plea has also sought closure and proper relocation of dairy units in Delhi.
It claimed that animals were kept in sheds with thatched roofs supported by bamboo sticks in east Delhi’s Ghazipur dairy, while they were forced to live under sheets in Masoodpur dairy near Vasant Kunj in south west Delhi.