Below is some excellent advice from India Times. But first, this is what a First Information Report (FIR) is:
A First Information Report (FIR) is a written document prepared by police organisations in India when they receive information about the commission of a cognisable offence. It is generally a complaint lodged with the police by the victim of a cognisable offence or by someone on his or her behalf, but anyone can make such a report either orally or in writing to the police.
For a non cognisable offence, a Community Service Register is created and registered.
FIR is an important document because it sets the process of criminal justice in motion. It is only after the FIR is registered in the police station that the police take up investigation of the case. Anyone who knows about the commission of a cognisable offence, including police officers, can file an FIR.
As described in law:
- When information about the commission of a cognisable offence is given orally, the police must write it down.
- The person giving information or making a complaint has a right to demand that the information recorded by the police be read to him or her.
- Once the information has been recorded by the police, it must be signed by the person giving the information.
India Times article
What you can do when you see cruelty to stray animals
Whenever you see a dog/cow being hit or stoned, be sure to inform the offender of the law. Should they persist, register an FIR against them at the closest police station. Do not be discouraged if the police do not, at first, take you seriously. In most cases they too do not know the animal protection laws. Be polite but firm. You will be doing a double service, punishing cruelty to a helpless animal, as well as educating the police on the animal protection laws.
If the municipality in your area is still killing homeless dogs, get an appointment with the Municipal Commissioner. Inform him that it has been proven that killing dogs does not reduce either their number or the incidence of bites / rabies therefore the Courts have ruled that it is illegal to kill animals simply for being homeless. Instead the Animal Welfare Board of India has evolved a set of guidelines for all municipalities directing the implementation of the Animal Birth Control (ABC) programme. If there is an animal welfare organisation in the area, approach it to take up the ABC programme , if not, the municipality can do it on its own. Should the municipality not agree to stop killing, contact a lawyer and file a case under the PCA Act 1960. In the meantime, write letters to the press and encourage others to do so too. Protect the dogs in your own area by putting collars on them.
If the municipality is rounding up stray dogs and abandoning them outside city limits, it is illegal under Section 11 PCA as it places them in circumstances likely to cause their death from starvation and thirst. Therefore, you can challenge this cruelty in court.
When you find cows on the street or tethered on public pavements, see if you can see any brand on them. Ask around to see if anyone knows their owner or the dairy to which they belong. Inform the owner that it is illegal to leave cows loose. If the owner does not have place to keep the cows properly or the means to feed them, file a complaint with the municipality asking that the cows be sent to a gaushala.
Should you see cows with burn marks, usually on their rumps, around a particular fruit / vegetable market, it is probable that the vegetable sellers throw acid on the animals to drive them away from their stalls. If there is a market association, approach the head and inform him of the law (IPC Section 428/429). Request that all vegetable vendors be warned against this practice. Inform the police station in the area to keep an eye out for such violations.
When you see an animal knocked over by a vehicle, get the number of the vehicle. Check the animal for signs of life. If possible, move it to safety and administer life saving first aid. If you can take it to a vet yourself, do so. If not, call an animal welfare organisation that has an ambulance. Once the animal is taken care of, file a complaint against the offender with the closest police station (IPC Section 428/429).
If you know of any research institute that is using animals, ask from where the animals have been procured. If you suspect that the animals have been taken from the street or a pound, contact Chairperson, CPCSEA, A-4 Maharani Bagh, New Delhi-65. In the meantime file a case with the police.