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Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Carriage of Pigeons and the rule ! - to follow or not to ??

Me too am a stickler to rules ~ but will you maintain this till the end of the post ?

              ‘Maari’ starring Dhanush was a  gangster comedy film written and directed by Balaji Mohan shot in Triplicane.  The hero a rowdysheeter is fond of   pigeons and wins many pigeon races ! ~ have you ever held a pigeon in your hands ?  

One of the most recognised voices in England and beyond won’t be heard on Test Match Special any more as Henry Blofeld has signed  off for the last time. Henry, known by millions of cricket fans around the world for his observations on fantasy ear-rings,  passing pigeons and buses, was educated early in the art of cricket commentary. “They said you have to paint the scene,” he explains. “You want the listeners to say: ‘You made me feel as if I was there.’

Feral pigeons (Columba livia domestica), also called city doves, are pigeons that are derived from the domestic pigeons that have returned to the wild. The domestic pigeon was originally bred from the wild rock dove, which naturally inhabits sea-cliffs and mountains.  A pigeon is a medium-sized seed-eating bird with a small head, short legs and a cooing voice.  It''s very similar to but generally larger than a dove.   A dove is a stocky bird very similar to, but generally smaller than a pigeon. It is gentle and those who oppose violence are referred to as doves.

Chapter X of Indian Railways Act deals with ‘booking of animals and birds’.  :   Consignments of animals and birds tendered for carriage by rail must be accompanied by a forwarding note on the appropriate form approved by the Central Government under section 64 of the Railways Act.   Under section 103 of the Railways Act, the liability of the railway administration as carrier of birds is limited to Rs.120/- per bird, unless the sender declares in the forwarding note, the animals or birds to be of a higher value and elects to pay the prescribed percentage charge on the excess of the value in addition to the freight charges at railway riskStation Masters are authorized to accept the percentage charge on excess value for animals or birds in all cases without prior reference to their Divisional Commercial Superintendent.  Should the consignor elect not to pay the percentage charge on the excess value, the animals and birds will be accepted for carriage under the terms and conditions of section 103 of the Railways Act, i.e. the responsibility of the railway administration for loss, destruction, damage, deterioration or non-delivery of animals and birds shall not exceed the amount specified.   Under section 101 of the Railways Act, a railway administration shall not be responsible for any loss or destruction of, or injuries to, any animal carried by railway arising from freight or restiveness of the animal or from overloading of wagon by the consignor. 

Only part of the Railways Act reproduced, now remember the 1st para and read on ~ not sure of any such Act regulating carriage of birds in Transport Corporation buses. 

TOI and Indian Express report that in Tamil Nadu,  a  conductor with the State Transport Corporation was issued a memo for not issuing a ticket to a pigeon, which happened to have a tryst with a drunk passenger while perched on the window of the bus from Dharmapuri three days ago.

Late on Thursday evening, the only government bus connecting Harur town and Ellavadi, a remote tribal village, was winding its way through the forest with more than 80 passengers on board. Just as the vehicle reached Harur's outskirts, checking inspectors flagged the bus for ticket inspection. A passenger in his midforties, allegedly drunk, had caught hold of the pigeon when it sat near the window and was having a conversation with the avian when the inspectors were checking the tickets.

Noticing the bird in the bus, one inspector asked the conductor if he had issued a ticket for the bird. To good measure, the inspector quoted some rule that insisted on tickets for animals and birds. The conductor said the passenger was not carrying the bird at the time of his boarding. Not impressed, the inspector issued the conductor a memo. An official quoted transport department rules as saying conductors should collect one-fourth of the full fare when a passenger carries more than 30 pigeons at a time.  “The rules don't mention about charging passengers for transporting one pigeon,“ the official said.  A senior TNSTC official in the Salem division said he would wait till Monday to see what the inspector submits. “Inspectors submit memos on Mondays. We will take appropriate action if any rule was broken,” he said.

Following this incident, a bus conductor said, crew operating government buses on the route are keeping an eagle's eye to ensure no birds fly into the bus. So what is your take – should the Conductor be fined for dereliction of duty or not ?

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

11th Sept. 2017.

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