Agartala: The High Court of Tripura has ordered the immediate closure of all pet shops and breeding centres running without obtaining necessary licence from Animal Resource Development Department (ARDD).

The division bench comprising Chief Justice Indrajit Mahanty and Justice SG Chattopadhyay was hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) on Tuesday when the court observed that 12 pet shops were running in Agartala city without registration.

The bench also observed that all 12 shop owners were requested to obtain a licence from the State Animal Welfare Board. However, none have got themselves registered yet.

“This court records its surprise that once the authority has found the 12 (twelve) pet shops and breeding centres as being unlicensed, they were statutorily required to act in accordance with law and direct immediate closure of all such activities which cannot be carried out without the necessary licence,” the Court observed.     

The court further directed the ARDD as well as the state animal welfare board and the Agartala municipal corporation to ensure that all such illegal pet shops and breeding centres operating without necessary licence are immediately closed. Also, the bench directed necessary inspection to be carried out.

The court directed the compliance of the directions and submission of a report within two weeks.

“This court is further informed at the Bar that there appears also to be commercial activities in sale of wild animals and birds duly notified under the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972. Accordingly, we also direct the authorities under the Wild Life (Protection) Act to take similar action of closure of all such shops where animals and birds covered thereunder are being sold and such compliance order shall also be filed before this court within a period of two weeks.” the court directed.

The court further said that similar actions will also be taken throughout Tripura. The case will be heard again on December 7 next.

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