Sromona Bhattacharyya Bhattacharyya
Hailing from Kolkata and now a resident of Bengaluru, Sromona is a multimedia journalist who has a knack for digging stories that truly deserve attention.
What were once buzzing villages filled with people has now become deserted, barren and unoccupied. Empty streets, broken-down houses, rubble, debris and silence are what marks the eight villages which have been mostly evacuated and reduced to debris to make way for the Navi Mumbai airport in Maharashtra.
The City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO), which is overseeing the mammoth project, has successfully shifted most of the residents of the villages. Reportedly, once the evacuation is completed, more than 3,500 families comprising 21,000 people would have to relocate. CIDCO needs a total of 2,260 hectares for the airport project at Panvel and is offering a total compensation of Rs 526 crore for resettlement of the villagers and including financial aid to build new houses and rent allowance for 18 months as well.
While CIDCO has ensured a plan of action for those displaced, the animals of these villages have been left behind, perhaps even forgotten. The project has not only affected humans whose houses have been uprooted but so are the hundreds of animals like dogs, cats and cattle which are left to fend for themselves in these ghost-villages. Without humans to depend on, most of the strays and pets have been discovered by animal activists as being in a dire state.
However, one Navi-Mumbai based NGO, Hands That Heal, has come forward to help these animals in need. Talking to The Logical Indian, Varsha Pillai, a volunteer with HTH said that the NGO first came to know about the plight of the animals in the villages through a Facebook post. After having informed Anamika Chaudhury, the NGO’s founder, a team of people accompanied by ambulances and food supplies started visiting the desolate villages.
This Past week, Team HTH rescued over 40+ dogs, puppies and kittens from the abandoned villages that will soon be replaced by the mega Navi Mumbai International Airport. Villages like Ganeshpuri are being torn down, the people re-settled and compensated. Amongst all the news of rehabilitation, money and the unchecked greed disguised as development, almost every single authority, department or agency overlooking the project has completely forgotten about our four-legged and winged citizens. Dogs and Cats that depended on these villages for food and water were roaming hungry and without any shelter. The dogs that once protected the town's streets were struggling for a piece of bread. Cows and Goats too have been abandoned in the haste of leaving the villages. This apathy towards animals is an indication of poor management and selfishness among many. The conditions at the site were first reported by Activist Arati Chauhan. We reached the site to find an almost apocalyptic scenario with broken houses, dust, scared animals running around exposed live electric wires and dangerous rubble. Its took 4 days, 4 Ambulances and 2 Autos to rescue the animals. They are now at the HTH Shelter, Karnala and we are now focusing on their rehabilitation, medical, adoption and care. As we stood on the deserted hill top village, with debris around us, the two things that people left behind were the animals who need us and the temple and its deity who we need. A fitting reminder that compassion in humanity has truly taken a hit. We are curretly looking after all the rescues at our shelter and could really use supprt and help in kind or cash.You can help us by ordering food online through our Amazon Wishlist – http://amzn.in/h8qWPbV You can send in Donations to – Name – Hands That HealAcc No- 00000037770534351IFSC Code – SBIN0021973SBI Branch – RoadpaliPaytm – 7718982119Or you can send us Food to the following Address's – Pooja Teli 902/A Manas Tower,Plot no 4/5/6/7, sector 17, KamotheNavi Mumbai 410209Contact – 7208878300. Sangeeta Sharma: Bhagyoday ,bldg flat 7 ,plot 14 ,sector 12, Near radha Krishna temple, Vashi, Navi Mumbai 400705. Contact – 7208035350
Hands That Heal ಅವರಿಂದ ಈ ದಿನದಂದು ಪೋಸ್ಟ್ ಮಾಡಲಾಗಿದೆ ಗುರುವಾರ, ಫೆಬ್ರವರಿ 21, 2019
What they saw was horrific! Scores of abandoned animals roaming the once-bustling streets of Ganeshpuri, one of the deserted hamlets in Panvel taluka. Pillai said, “We found dogs who were badly injured, litters of puppies who were malnourished and sick cats who needed immediate medical care.” Ever since then, teams of volunteers have made long visits to the site and rescued these animals, some of whom were pregnant as well. The team till now has rescued over 60 animals from only six of these villages, while two others are left.
However, HTH has been struggling with the rehabilitation process of so many rescues. Pillai, who herself takes care of over nine canines and said that the shelter does not have enough space to accommodate so many animals, let alone make space for the puppies which are yet to be born, additionally, giving adequate medical care and keeping up with the sterilization process of so many dogs and cats have become all too overwhelming for this quaint shelter home.
Talking to The Logical India, the NGO’s founder Anamika Chaudhury said that she already have rescues of her own which are housed at the shelter and the added pressure of so many others have kept her on her toes. Calls for help to other similar organisations have been proved to be ineffective so far. “We have only received Rs 70,000 in donations so far and that amount is only going to sustain the rescues for only a few days.” However, the NGO has received bags of animal food as well.
In a quest to find a multi-pronged solution to the problem, Pillai and a few others have been engaging in talks with the local municipal authorities to help set up an animal shelter for the rescues closer to a sterilization site. She said that response has been good so far, but more needs to be done to be able to help the animals in the long run as well.
The Logical Indian appreciated the efforts of the NGO as well as the team to try and make tremendous efforts to rescue the abandoned animals from the construction sites.
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