The demand for dog meat in Nagaland is greater than its supply, so live dogs are illegally trafficked across India through into Assam, then illegally smuggled into Nagaland, to be slaughtered and sold for human consumption.
This was happening so much that authorities in Assam increased their highway watch to check illegal trafficking of dogs to the neighboring state Nagaland, where dog meat is considered a delicacy, especially around election times.
Dog traders line up rows of hog-tied and trussed live dogs which are crammed inside plastic-gunny bags, on the side of highways, waiting for dog traffickers to pay them and take the dogs away. A common place for this to happen was the highway near Dimapur along the Assam-Nagaland border check-gate.
Election time in Nagaland is always a time for festivities because village councils unofficially deciding the fate of which candidates are elected. Once councils decide who villages should vote for, the community is expected to follow and are rewarded by festive feasts of food, usually dog meat.
A few years ago, buyers from Nagaland would buy dogs in Assam villages for between Rs 200 and Rs 500 each, depending on the health and build. However during festivals, a single dog could fetch a price as high as Rs 2,000. Todays prices would be much higher.
The wildlife warden of Golaghat district confirmed to T.I. that illegal dog smuggling is lucrative, even though its punishable under Section 11 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960.
Fight Dog Meat: I am traveling to Kerala, India next month and look forward to seeking out first hand information on India’s dog meat trade. Kerala is a hub for collecting dogs to be trafficked to Nagaland and I hope to find more information on this.
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