Wednesday, July 5, 2017


On 9th May 2017, myself and my colleague went for a evening walk in Besant  Nagar, Chennai  where we met a  “Narikurava  family”  ( a  Nomadic Tribes )  who were busy with their means of livelihood   by selling small fancy items  like bangles,  hair pins,  saree pins and combs etc.,  on the platform. I have known this family for more than five years as animal lovers. 

The family consists of father, mother and a female child.  The female child’s name is Thilothama, 10 years old and studying 5th standard in a nearby school. Being a nomadic tribes, the husband and wife are uneducated and homeless, their life and livelihood also on the platform, under a tree.  Though they are homeless but fond of animals. They have provided shelter to the homeless animals and made them as part of their family.  Like parents, the child is also fond of animals and loving them so much. Being a single female child, she spends much of her time with the homeless animals.  There is a strong emotional bond between the child and homeless animals.  She used to talk and play with them.

When we were walking towards  their  place the child identified  me from her place  and running forward to me and hold   my   hands  fondly  and   started    narrating the incident   happened  a few  days   ago.   While narrating the incident, she took a small old model Nokia hand phone from her bag and showed us the photos of a small new born squirrel.  As the family is living under a tree,   they used to   hear the sounds of crows and   squirrels    regularly   and got     familiar to that sounds.  One day the sound was little different and unusual, the squirrels   made the sound continuously.  While hearing the sound, she happened to see a newborn   squirrel was   falling down near to her.   She immediately took the squirrel and kept it safely in her folded fingers with affection. The squirrel’s eyes were not yet opened. Thereafter she started taking care of the squirrel.  Every day she fed the squirrel with milk. The squirrel started growing and moving here and   there.  She happily played   with the squirrel every day.  After school timings she rushed to her place and started   playing   with the squirrel.  Even while sleeping,   she kept the squirrel on her chest. Her young world   was rolling and   moving with that squirrel only. 

One day when  she was  playing  with  the  squirrel  in the  platform and her parents  were  doing   their  work,  two persons  came to their  place   and introduced  themselves as an  animal   activist  and  a  personnel of police  department.  They enquired   about the squirrel and   asked the family to handover it to them.  While   enquiring, the animal activist and the personnel of police department were ready to pay some amount of money to the family in order to convince them.   But  the  parents and child   begged   them   that the     they were    not  willing to  handover it  and  wanted  to   take care of  it  in their  custody.  Finally they warned  the family to  handover  the  squirrel   to the   animal activists,    otherwise  they  would  book   them  under  Animal  Cruelty  Act.  Also  they  blamed  the  family  that  “You  are  a  hunter, after   some  time  you will kill  the  squirrel  and  eat  it”. At last, the innocent family with heavy heart handed over it to the animal activist.  After  handing  over  it,  the  child  didn’t  have  her  food   and  crying  for   three days. The parents too were emotionally disturbed   and   didn’t have their food for three days along with   the child.

I have known the family for   more than five years. I always admired them for their love, concern and   affinity   with the homeless   animals   in their neighbourhood.  I have been providing them with   pet foods, medicines and water bowls for their pets. Whenever I met them, we had long discussions by sharing valuable information about pet animals and the importance  of their child’s education.  During my interactions with them, I used to admire  their unconditional  love and passion  towards   the   homeless  animals. When the child was  narrating   this incident   to me, her eyes pooled with tears, even her mother too.  The   innocent   father    asked  me,  “Sir,  don’t  we  have  any  rights  to  rearing  even  a  small   squirrel?”.  “We are   homeless”.  “We are uneducated   and   voiceless”. We always   feel that   these   homeless animals are also like us.  That’s why we love   each other.  In this  world,   as  a  nomadic   tribes, we  feel  being  loved  by  our  pets  only  with  unconditional  love  and   loyalty. We too love them  unconditionally with compassion. We believe   and treat our pets (dogs) as our god   “bairava”   who protects   us   against    all evils. While   listening   to them, their hopeless voices made me more painful. That pains took me to many sleepless nights These   sleepless and   disturbed   nights  made   me to think more and more  about   the  incident  and  the  factors  which  are  responsible  for constructing  the  mindset ( psyche)  of  people  to  perceive  that  the  nomadic  tribes  are  cruel,  unsocial  and  compassionate. 

As a whole, animal activists don’t take the law in your hand without analyzing the facts and others point of view.  Just because of she belongs to Narikurava  family doesn’t  she have the right to have the pets?  Can you give answers for Thilothama family’s questions ?.

Don’t make others a victim and animals to suffer in the name of animal rescue for your face book posts.