Police have opened an investigation paper into an alleged act of cruelty by Kulim Municipal Council (MPKK) enforcement workers while carrying out culling and disposal of stray dogs at Taman Tiram in Kulim
According to Kedah police chief Kamarul Zaman Mamat, two reports were lodged over the cruel and inhumane act after a video showing the alleged incident went viral over the week.
"An investigation paper has been opened under Section 428 of the Penal Code for committing mischief by killing, poisoning, maiming, or rendering useless any animal," he was quoted as saying by Bernama.
Kamarul, however, added that they are still in the midst of investigations to determine the laws and standard operating procedures (SOPs) in dealing with stray and wild dogs.
The police investigation comes amidst calls from animal rights activists
In a statement, a group called Lawyers for Animal Rights said that the video showed a "heinous and cruel assault" on a defenceless dog "with numerous huge pitch fork-like weapons" should be investigated.
The video shows the dog being held down by three alleged MPKK workers using catchpoles that looks like pitchforks, with the dog yelping and struggling to break free from under the pitchforks.
"Even more horrifying is when another MPKK worker sticks another sharp catchpole into several parts of the dog's body, such as its belly and head, while another person holds it down," the group said.
"One of the men later resorts to kicking the dog with his boots and the dog suddenly stops yelping as it is either dead or badly injured by the violent acts. We demand that the police investigate the MPKK personnel under the Animal Welfare Act 2015 as MPKK should not condone or cover up the wrongful acts."
Another video, uploaded on the Facebook page of Malaysia Independent Animal Rescue (MIAR), showed the council workers carrying out the same culling and disposal procedure on another dog
The other video shows a brown-coloured dog being allegedly abused.
MIAR's lawyers Rajesh Nagarajan and Sachpreetraj Sohanpal, both from Lawyers for Animal Rights, stated that the group is giving the council seven days to comply, failing which it will file a civil suit.
"What MPKK did was clearly illegal. Only a veterinarian can put a dog down if necessary," Free Malaysia Today quoted Rajesh as saying.
Last month, five officers from Kota Samarahan Municipal Council (MPKS) allegedly barged into a house to take away seven dogs: