New Delhi [India], October 18 (ANI): Delhi Police has told the Delhi High Court that tongas (horse carts) are seldom found within the majority of areas in the national capital and in case any horse carts are found to be disrupting the traffic on the roads, necessary action restricting the movement or requiring removal of the tonga from the roads, has been taken from time to time.
"...use of tonga(s) is seldom found within the majority of areas in Delhi. Furthermore, in case any tonga(s) is found to be disrupting the traffic on the roads, necessary action restricting the movement or requiring removal of the said tonga(s) from the roads, has been taken by the answering respondents (Delhi Traffic Police) from time to time," the traffic police said in an affidavit.
It also added that accordingly, upon any request received from the local civic body, the traffic police shall provide all necessary support and force for implementation of the ban on plying of tonga(s) as per the dated 04.01.2010 passed by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi.
It also said that legal provisions, which have been laid down regarding this are being implemented.
South Delhi Municipal Corporation has also filed an affidavit in the matter stating that the veterinary department takes regular action against illegal plying of tongas in its area. South DMC also told the court that it has issued licences to 135 buggies for being used in ceremonies including marriage.
The court has scheduled the matter to be heard on January 19, 2021.
The court was hearing an application filed by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) seeking to implement the provisions of the Prevention and Control of Infectious and Contagious Disease in Animal Act, 2009 and National Action Plan for control and eradication of glanders in horses, mules, ponies, and donkeys in Delhi.
PETA India, in its application, has sought a direction to the Delhi government to test all the horses, mules, ponies, and donkeys in the national capital immediately.
The application has said that despite there being a complete ban on plying of horse-drawn carts on roads of Delhi, authorities are brazenly permitting the carts to be plied in Delhi thereby jeopardising not only the safety and security of the residents of Delhi but also undermining the risk, torture and cruelty meted out to the equines.
That entire Delhi is grappling with the COVID-19 pandemic, which compelled the government to lock down the entire country, and the said directions are continuing till date and the virus has created turmoil in the life of the people, the plea has said.
It has said that the outbreak of another disease like glanders in the horses, mules and donkeys, and its transmission to humans will lead to catastrophe and will create havoc for the people of Delhi.
The petitioner had apprehended that if the authorities fail to take timely action in preventing the spread of zoonotic disease, same may lead to the death of not only mute and helpless animals but it may also claim several human lives. (ANI)