Srinagar: At least 20 people, children among them, were attacked and injured by a stray dog in Batamaloo on Saturday, triggering panic among the residents.
The dog appeared at the Batamaloo Bus Stand in the afternoon and bit a middle-aged man identified as Ali Mohammad Dar of Tangmarg in his right hand, witnesses told Kashmir Reader.
The dog was chased away, but after a while it surfaced in Kashi Mohalla in the interiors of Batamaloo and went on a biting spree.
“Madiha, my 8-year-old niece was on way to the Darsgah when the dog attacked her. She suffered serious wounds on her face and hands,” said Riyaz Ahmad, who was also bitten by the dog in his hand while saving Madiha.
He said he took Madiha to the SMHS hospital, where the doctors operated upon her. Madiha’s injuries are life threatening, he said.
Farooq Ahmad, another witness said that after biting Madiha, the dog attacked and injured about 20 people in Kashi Mohalla and other localities.
“It attacked whoever came its way. The people tried to capture it but it managed to flee through the narrow lanes,” Ahmad said.
SMHS hospital officials told Kashmir Reader they received 20 people with dog bites. Besides, Madiha, her uncle and Ali Mohammad, Abdul Mannan Mir, Abdul Salam Hajam, Tasleema, Momin,and Sakeena, all residents of Batamaloo, Shehnawaz Ali Bhat of Balhama, Manzoor Ahmad of Budgam, Aqib Javed of Gojwara, Miss Ulfat, Mst Sara Begum, Rizwan Ahmed, Suhail Ahmad Beig,Mohammad Shafi, Mrs Zoona Begum ,and Ravinder Singh, a truck driver from Punjab, were treated for dog bites.
“All those brought to the hospital had class II and III injuries. Some were bitten in hand, arm, neck or legs. All the injured were discharged after first aid and after being administered anti-rabies vaccines. However, one child has been operated upon for serious face injuries,” a doctor in the emergency unit told Kashmir Reader.
The panic created by the dog attacks prompted youths in Batamaloo to form groups that would keep a watch over the stray dog which is yet to be caught. The youth carrying sticks and shovels were patrolling the deserted lanes.
Deputy Commissioner Srinagar Farooq Shah told Kashmir Reader that he will take up the issue with the authorities concerned.
According to official figures, approximately 70,000 dog bite cases were recorded in the Valley in the past four years. In Srinagar alone, over 12,500 people were bitten by canines.
According to official data, there are about 48,000 dogs in the city but unofficial estimates say the number is about 100,000.