31 spotted deer died in six months inside IIT-M, autopsy only done on 15: RTI
According to the response requested by the activist, while autopsies were performed on all four dead black deer in July, September and November, only 15 of the 31 dead deer were subjected to autopsies.
Three of the autopsies were carried out by the Tamil Nadu University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences (TANUVAS) in Veperi and 12 by the Chennai Wildlife Division Veterinarian. For the blackbucks, one of the autopsies was carried out by TANUVAS and three by the wildlife division vet in Chennai.
The report adds that three of the spotted deer died from plastic/polyethylene indigestion, two of them from an attack of tuberculosis, two from dog bites and two from weakness. Post-mortem reports from blackbucks are still awaited.
Furthermore, he added that none of the spotted deer or blackbucks died from accidents during the six-month period.
IIT Madras has come under scrutiny after reports surfaced that several stray dogs housed in the dog shelter inside the campus had died.
Health Minister Ma Surabmanian visited the shelter area in October 2021 and informed the media that 56 out of 188 dogs have died in the past year.
He added that IIT-M authorities had informed him that 55 deer had died on campus due to dog attacks since 2018 and therefore the dogs were kept inside the shelter to protect the population. of deer.
Speaking to indianexpress.com, Arun Prasanna, the founder of People for Cattle in India (PFCI) who filed a PIL on the matter with Madras High Court in 2021, said the data reveals the inability of management to maintain a safe environment for animals such as blackbucks. that are protected under Schedule 1 of the Wildlife Protection Act.
“We searched for data on deer that died between July and December 2021 inside campus specifically because the dogs are already confined to the shelter and therefore dog bite cannot be cited as the reason. The RTI shows that despite the absence of dogs, deer deaths have occurred,” he said.
He added: “Of the 31 spotted deer, the autopsy was only carried out on 15, what happened to the others? This is a very serious problem. The management is trying to cover something up, they don’t “There’s no transparency. If the same thing had happened inside a wildlife sanctuary or park, would the Forest Department have remained silent?”
Arun said authorities were more focused on creating better infrastructure rather than properly caring for deer welfare. “It’s only a matter of time for the authorities to make IIT-M a deer-free campus, just like they made it a dog-free campus,” Arun added.
The activist added that the case is due to be heard in the High Court on Wednesday and that they plan to bring the matter to the attention of the Chennai Commissioner and push the Forest Department to investigate the matter.