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Maha govt may consider allowing Victoria horse carriages: HC

Press Trust of India  |  Mumbai 

The today said the could consider framing a new policy or rules permitting plying of Victoria horse carriages, which have been banned in the city, provided the against animal cruelty is strictly adhered to.

In June 2015, the HC had directed the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to put a complete stop to carriages driven by horses famously known as 'Victoria' carriages as they are "illegal and violative of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act".

The had then directed the state to frame a comprehensive policy to rehabilitate the persons (carriage owners and drivers) who would be affected by the ban and also the horses.

The direction was given on a PIL filed by city-based 'Animals and Birds Charitable Trust' alleging cruelty to horses used for joyrides.

A division bench of Justices and A S Gadkari today, however, said if the was willing it could consider framing a new policy or rules permitting the Victoria horse carriages to ply but with certain conditions.

"We are taking a slight departure from the high court's judgement. You (government and BMC) need not stop it (horse carriages) altogether. It can be still used as joyrides for entertainment purposes and for tourist attraction.

"But then the authorities will have to carry out regular inspection to see that the horses are taken care of, are well fed and given adequate rest," Justice Kanade said.

"Such an arrangement will be good for the horse carriage owners and horse riders too. Some balance can be created. Separate policy or rules can be framed permitting them to be used for joyrides provided the provisions of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act are followed," the said.

The bench was today informed by the government that its policy for rehabilitation of 221 families (91 carriage owners and 130 riders) was ready and would be placed before the Cabinet soon.

"The government can also consider giving these persons auto and taxi permits," the court said posting the matter for further hearing on May 2.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, March 16 2017. 17:57 IST