HC seeks Centre, Punjab’s response on dog breeders’ plea on cruelty rules

The Punjab and Haryana HC have set the next hearing date for February 23; the dog breeders’ plea is that their fundamental rights are being violated

Chandigarh Punjab and Haryana Supreme Court on Monday called for a response from the center and the Punjab government to a motion to challenge the Cruelty Prevention Rules, communicated by the center in 2017. Supreme Judge RS Jha ’s bench and Judge Arun Palli have requested a response from the Center and Punjab government by February 23.

The plea by the Breeders Welfare Association, an organization based in Patiala, called for the rules to be lifted. She argues that these rules are a blatant departure from the exclusive power of the state government to make rules in this area. The regulations also violate the basic rights of breeders under the “guise of welfare” of the animals, it says in the complaint.

The provisions of the 1960 Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act were communicated without the consent of either House of Parliament under Section 38-A of the 1960 Act, the plea said. The objections raised by breeders concern certain conditions in the prohibition of breeding dogs without registration, the registration of the breeder and establishment, inspection of the establishment and the conditions of sale and keeping of records. The rules stipulate that all dogs must be neutered for six months; Breeders say this has a “deterrent effect” on dog health. Another rule that breeders oppose is the imposition of penalties when the physical appearance of dogs of a particular breed deviates slightly from “normal appearance”.

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