A 90-year old write-up by Mahatma Gandhi in 'Young India' magazine on stray dogs was today presented in the Supreme Court, which is hearing pleas on culling of certain kinds of bovine animals, to buttress the point that those without an owner are a "menace to the society".
Senior advocate Dushyant Dave, who is assisting the court as amicus curiae in pleas filed against Bombay and Kerala High Court orders allowing culling of stray dogs in these two states, quoted Gandhi on the issue.
"I am a pet dog lover and don't like stray ones who are a menace to the society," Dave told the bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra.
In the article in 'Young India' in 1926, Mahatma Gandhi, the strongest voice on non-violence, had said he favoured killing of dogs "whenever they are a menace to the society".
"A roving dog without an owner is a danger to society and a swarm of them is a menace to its very existence... If we want to keep dogs in towns or villages in a decent manner, no dog should be suffered to wander. There should be no stray dogs even as we have no stray cattle...
"But can we take individual charge of these roving dogs? Can we have a pinjrapole for them? If both these things are impossible, then there seems to me no alternative except to kill them," Gandhi had said.
The bench took the article on record and said that it would consider it while deciding the cases on culling of dogs.