Can’t feed birds in balcony if neighbours object: Bombay HC
On Tuesday, the Bombay High Court ruled that residents cannot feed birds or animals from their apartment premises, including the balcony, if it inconveniences other residents.
The court was hearing a plea against the removal of the bird feeding tray installed by an animal activist in her Worli highrise apartment. The activist, Jigeesha Thakore, also serves as the secretary of the All India Animal Welfare Association.
Thakore was taken to court by an elderly couple, Dilip and Meena Shah, who owned the flat below. The couple claimed that the regular feeding of birds had became a nuisance for them. In their complaint, the couple also mentioned that the unhygienic conditions and bird droppings falling in their balcony had worsened Meena’s asthma.
According to a TOI report, Justice Rajendra Savant said, “Nobody can have a grievance about (Jigeesha’s) love for birds and animals. The question is if she is entitled to feed them by placing a tray below her balcony window so as to cause nuisance to others in the society.”
“Howsoever much one may want to feed birds and animals, it would obviously have to be done in a manner as not to cause nuisance to the neighbours or other residents. It is well settled that a person cannot use his premises for causing nuisance to his neighbours or other residents,” he added.
The court also observed that there was enough material at the prima facie stage to indicate that other members had been inconvenienced by the bird-feeding, “The trial court has, therefore, observed that she may feed the birds at some other place where no nuisance is likely to be caused to anybody,” said the judge.
Jigneesha’s lawyer argued that the couple had not raised any objections for over a decade and was only doing so now to harass her. But, the judge upheld the interim order of the trial court asking Jigeesha to remove the feeding tray from the balcony.