According to a Chennai Corporation official, stern action against cattle owners was taken after the civic body increased the penalty up to 10-fold from Rs 1,000 to Rs 10,000 since April. “Although the hike came into effect in April, the drive was intensified in August and September when 75 and 73 stray cattle were secured respectively,” the official said.
The civic body seized 20 cattle in April and 27 cattle in May, followed by 47 and 67 in June and July respectively. Meanwhile, pointing out to the opposition they face from the cattle owners, the officials said seizing stray cattle can be dangerous for them in some areas. “At those places, we would seek police security for our team,” the official added.
Corporation would maintain the captured cattle for three days and collect Rs 250 per day from the owners.
“If the owners fail to turn up to take their cattle back, the animals would be handed over to Blue Cross of India and will not be returned. Due to this, many cattle owners stopping themselves from letting their cattle stray,” the official said.
Nearly 20 per cent of the cattle seized so far remains unreturned. “Owners of calves would not show up to take their cattle due to the huge fine. However, lactating cows are taken back after paying the penalty,” the official added.