SHILLONG, May 16: Fed up with the problems that they face on a daily basis because of the teeming dog population in the locality, the residents of Kench’s Trace which is among the oldest localities of Shillong have urged the civic authorities and the local MLA, Sanbor Shullai to come to their aid.
The sheer number of stray dogs near the Circuit House in Laban and in Kench’s Trace has resulted in a situation where pedestrians no longer feel safe, fearing an attack by these homeless canines at any time. The sight of the area near Circuit House – which happens to be a VIP guesthouse of the state government – is one that can scare anyone and residents have complained that the danger level rises when dusk sets in since there are no street lights either.
Residents around Circuit House complained that the population of the stray dogs has increased manifold and that these dogs have made the numerous roads and lanes their habitat.
“It is almost impossible to tread out of the house,” even if it is for visiting the marketplace or doctors et al, said residents for fear of these canines who have reportedly made several attempts on pedestrians.
While numerous cases of stray dog incidents in the past could not be handled by the municipality for want of a proper dog squad, it is learnt that the civic body does not have trained dog catchers. To add to the woes of these residents, the strays litter the roads and by lanes of the area turning them into unhygienic sources of innumerable diseases.
The extent of the problem has put into question the inability of the authorities of the state government to curb this menace right in the heart of a city which is vying for the Smart City tag from the union government.
The addition of stray dogs from other areas which ultimately find their way to the locality has resulted in an exponential rise in their numbers, adding to the number of puppies with each litter that comes along after every mating season.
Many complained that this is a perennial problem here more due to the quiet VIP nature of these areas. That such a civic mess has encapsulated these prime locations where many bungalows of the state government besides the presence of several important government establishments is actually putting a question on the efficacy of the municipality.
People have narrated scary ordeals of their encounters with these strays and the inability of the Meghalaya Energy Corporation Limited (MeECL) to maintain the street lighting in the area has only added to the problems being faced by the residents.
“It is a different demographic change that is afflicting the residents of Kench’s Trace,” said those who are looking up to the local MLA now to come up with a solution keeping in mind his stand to file a PIL against the PHE in the recent past for its inability to provide adequate water supply to the people of Laban.