Alsatian assault kills canine, proprietor booked for failing to manage pet

MUMBAI: A died following a violent attack by an in a Cuffe Parade earlier this month. Last week, the sheltie’s shattered owner, prominent Aspi Chinoy, lodged an with Cuffe Parade police station against Tarun Bali, the Alsatian’s owner, for negligence in failing to restrain his dog despite knowing that the could cause harm.
Sassy, the “victim,” was nine years old. She lived with the Chinoys and another sheltie, Sammy, on the 21st floor of the highrise. Lexi, the “aggressor,” is six years old and resides on the fourth floor of the tower. Sassy battled for life for 15 days before succumbing to her injuries on April 7.

This is a case where a little-known and little-used Section 289 of the Indian Penal Code has been invoked against the dog owner for injuries caused to the liftman when the pet launched his assault. “The FIR has been filed since the dog poses a more than probable danger to residents, children and visitors in the building. It had injured the liftman too when it attacked Sassy,” said Chinoy.

“Sassy was like a child to me,” said Chinoy (67). He has sought Lexi’s removal from the building to prevent any recurrent attacks on other residents, staff and pets.

The society has called for a meeting this Thursday to decide Lexi’s fate. “The continued presence of the large powerful Alsatian who has repeatedly attacked and now killed a dog and bitten the liftman poses grave danger and imminent threat to residents and staff,” says the society notice issued on Tuesday.

“The dog should not be punished for what I feel was a human error as his regular handler was away and an unfortunate chain of circumstances led to the sad incident,’’ said Bali (49). “Uprooting a dog from his home is like abandoning a child. He has nowhere to go. ”

Chinoy said, “On March 23, my little gentle dog Sassy, a sheltie, just under 10kgs, was waiting for the service lift outside our flat on the 21st floor around 7.15am. When the lift doors opened, Mr Bali’s dog charged out, unleased. Sans any provocation, he viciously attacked Sassy. She suffered a broken jaw, five very deep bites, a destroyed kidney and serious internal injuries. The liftman who attempted to stop the attack was also injured by the killer dog whose handler stood by and did nothing.’’ Chinoy added that Lexi had also bitten his younger dog Sammy last August. Bali, then, had assured to keep Lexi on leash and muzzled to ensure that such attacks do not recur. “I now deeply regret that I accepted his assurances in good faith and took no further action…It might have saved Sassy,’’ said Chinoy.

“Both dogs broke free from the handlers. The liftman who intervened sustained minor injuries. We know our dog is big. We must take additional care… We were extremely distressed and expressed our concern and regret multiple times to Mr Chinoy…Unfortunately his dog succumbed after two weeks…We reiterate our commitment to making thebuilding secure,” said Bali. Police sub-inspector Deepak Mali said a probe is on.

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