India police arrest students who threw dog off roof

2016-07-06 18:58
An Indian animal welfare activist carries an injured dog known as Badhra after the stray was flung from a 2-storey balcony in Chennai "for fun”. (Arun Aankar, AFP)

An Indian animal welfare activist carries an injured dog known as Badhra after the stray was flung from a 2-storey balcony in Chennai "for fun”. (Arun Aankar, AFP)

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Chennai - Police in southern India have arrested two medical students, an inspector said on Wednesday, after a video of one flinging a stray dog from the balcony of a two-storey building went viral, sparking outrage.

The footage shows one of the students beaming as he lifts the dog by the scruff of the neck to the ledge and finally tosses her over. The other student is thought to have filmed the incident.

An animal rights activist later found the dog injured but alive. According to police, the students said during questioning that they threw the dog and filmed it "just for fun".

Police in Tamil Nadu state arrested the pair, who are final-year students at a medical college in the state capital Chennai, and a local court on Wednesday granted them bail.

"The court has granted bail to the students. As per the bail order, they paid 10 000 rupees (about R2 200) each," local police inspector, Frank D Ruben, told AFP.

Police began searching for the students on Tuesday following a complaint filed by an activist from the government's Animal Welfare Board of India.

Animal cruelty laws

Activist Shravan Krishnan found the dog and posted a photo on Instagram late on Tuesday of him holding the injured animal, who has now been checked by a team of veterinarians.

One said the puppy had fractured her right leg but seemed otherwise unscathed by her ordeal. "It seems to be a puppy of around five months old and presently the conditions and vital [statistics] seem okay," said R. Jayaprakash.

Earlier, the Indian branch of the Humane Society International offered a reward of 100 000 rupees (about R22 000) to anyone who could provide information for the students' arrest.

Others called for stronger animal cruelty laws in the country.

"Med student smiles as he throws a terrified dog off a roof. Animal cruelty #law in India is a joke. #dogs#justice," Twitter user B Jorgensen said.

In 2007, animal rights supporters created uproar when municipal workers in the southern Indian high-tech city of Bangalore culled thousands of street dogs after a child was mauled to death by a pack of neighbourhood strays.

Read more on:    india  |  animals
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