Shimla, May 2 (UNI) Close on the heels of Himachal Pradesh Government's decision to set up a primate park for monkeys here, the Shimla Municipal Corporation is considering a proposal to set up a dog protection park on the outskirts of this hill state's capital.
''About 500 stray dogs will be relocated in a forest area just below Panjeri village on the Shimla-Kalka National Highway, near here, under a pilot project,'' Corporation Commissioner Amitabh Awasthi told UNI.
He said of the 15,000 square metre identified area for the project, separate dog kennels would be built over 2,000 square metre area for 500 dogs of the town initially.
Of the 3,500 stray dogs in this tourist resort, identified after a survey, the corporation would consider relocating all dogs of the town after the success of its pilot project, Mr Awasthi added.
He said the cost of the entire project would be Rs 30 lakh and added that it was a small cost for keeping the town free of the dog menace.
The park was being set up in consultation with the Animal Welfare Board of India experts who would study the behavioral change of these 500 dogs for the first three months on which the extension of the project would be based, he said.
The corporation's commissioner said what was happening until now was that the dogs captured in a particular area of the town were being let off in the other area, leading to a situation where the problem was merely being transferred, the Commissioner added.
Replying to a question whether the corporation would be in a position to keep running the project over the years considering the fact that it involved huge sum of money, he said funds would not be a constraint for the project, which would relieve the town of the stray dogs.
The Himachal Pradesh Government has already set up a primate protection park over 232 hectare area for over 2,000 monkeys here to provide them an opportunity to dwell in their natural surroundings with an assured food supply.
UNI AS VKJ DB PDT VC2004