Chhattisgarh High Court : A Bench comprising of Thottathil B. Radhakrishnan, C.J. and Pritinker Diwaker, J. directed the State Government to support the families of unfortunate victims of animal attacks. The Court observed that to support victims of crimes by humans there is a victim compensation scheme under the provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure. Victims of animal attacks face similar situations as attack by human beings and hence in the absence of any specific schemes, the government should extend ex gratia help to a certain victim’s family whose child died of dog bite. The Court also gave the direction to State Government to describe what action has been taken for dissemination of information to the public at large about such facility regarding the enormous rate of dog bites including stray dogs.
In his submissions, the learned Advocate General stated that there was lack of cohesion between the different departments of government (the Department of Health and Health Services) in streamlining the efforts to handle the problem.
The Court further stated that Article 21 of the Constitution (Fundamental right to life) also includes right to health which in turn makes a person eligible to the protective cover by administration of preventive medicine and also by provision of appropriate curative medicines, as and when required. The Court finally ordered the Advocate General to obtain instructions from the jurisdictional police as to whether or not a complaint was filed or case registered for over a month on the unnatural death of a victim of dog bite on basis of which this Public Interest litigation was filed. [In re, Court on its own motion v. State of Chhattisgarh, 2017 SCC OnLine Chh 460, order dated 23.03.2017]