The commission had passed its orders in a dog-bite case between one Munni on one side and Neetu Chikkara and Gurgaon MC on the other. Aggrieved by those orders, dog-lovers Shivani Dasmahapatra and Sameer Verma filed two separate petitions, contending that the commission had exceeded its jurisdiction and gone beyond the scope of a consumer dispute. They claimed that the commission had transgressed beyond the Consumer Protection Act, 2019, into public policy and legislative domain, and only a high or supreme court could give such as ruling.
They argued that the consumer commission, being a creature of a statute, could not overstep its powers. The petitioners claimed to be fully cognizant that public safety could not be underestimated and steps must be taken to curb dog-bites. They didn’t challenge the consumer dispute aspect of the case or the compensation awarded but objected only to the blanket ban.
Justice Vinod S Bhardwaj of the HC stayed the directions that the commission had passed. The court also directed the MC to list the steps taken for dog registration and finding out which dogs were not allowed to be imported. The MC must also enforce the use of dog leash, dog scoopers, and disposable bags, besides collecting the details of dog pounds and infirmaries as mandated under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960. The civic body must also specify the dogs vaccinated in the last three years. The HC heard the matter on November 24 but released the orders’ copy on Wednesday.