Angad Singh Bhatia, a resident of Pune and ardent dance lover may well be one of the youngest animal welfare activists in India. At just 19 years of age, he is in the process of organising a drive to feed as many stray dogs as he can, as well as spraying them with anti-tick spray to ease their suffering. This drive will take place on the 19th of September 2021.
VoI spoke to Angad to learn more about his efforts.
“As the lockdown began, I saw stray dogs going hungry, the store owners who used to throw them some scraps were forced to close their shops, and other people were too scared to step out and feed them. So I used to sneak out at night and feed them some rotis.”
“Ever since then I have been seized by a desire to do something for these speechless creatures.” He said.
Pune is home to an alarming 2,74,000 stray dogs, as revealed by a 2019 census, and Angad aims to give them all a full belly. To this end, he has started a fundraiser on Ketto and aims to raise at least ₹ 20,000 to purchase food. Sadly, he told VoI that so far, he has been able to raise only around ₹4,500. Team VoI wholeheartedly supports his cause and encourages everyone to donate. In Angad’s words, “Whether you are a dog lover or are scared of them if you like to see a smile, then help us give one to our speechless friends by making any donation that contents your heart.”
Another of Angad’s long-term aims include reducing and ultimately eliminating the abuse of dogs and other speechless animals. “I absolutely cannot bear to see people beat up animals for no reason and then get away with it. Assaulting an animal should bear the same punishment as assaulting a human being.” He said.
Speaking about the recent judgement by the Delhi high court in which it held that all animals possess legal personhood, Angad said that he believes the judgment is a step forward in the correct direction and hopes that it will help reduce the rampant abuse of stray dogs and other animals that he sees all around him.