Hundreds of dogs, their bodies piled atop each other

A heartbreaking scene was discovered near a lake in southern India — the bodies of 300 dogs had been cruelly disposed of in a mass grave in the village of Lingapalem. The poor animals were actually meant to be humanely spayed or neutered, and then released. Those are India’s official government guidelines on how to deal with an overpopulation of stray dogs. But local animal welfare activists have reason to believe that Lingapalem local authorities may have hired “animal killers” to do away with the defenseless dogs completely through poisonous injection.

India’s Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act makes it illegal to “beat, kick, torture, mutilate, administer an injurious substance, or cruelly kill an animal”. But those last two points are exactly what these 300 dogs went through.

Police from Dharmajigudem, a neighboring village, have already started an investigation, which is heartening — they are examining the decomposing bodies of the dogs in order to determine an official cause of death, and there is evidence to suggest that the poison that probably killed them was bought from local pharmacies. But we need to remain vigilant. If local authorities themselves informally ordered this mass animal killing, then there is no telling how deep or wide the corruption goes. Sign the petition demanding a proper, thorough investigation into the murders of these 300 dogs, and that charges be brought accordingly!

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