She died of a heart attack; her pets followed soon after

Animal activist was broke, say friends; starvation or poisoning suspected in her pets’ deaths

Awoman who used to rescue and foster animals was found dead in her house in Janapriya Layout. Her pets – four dogs and a cat – were found dead too. Kumuda, 65, the deceased, was married to Mumtaz Ahmed 46, an auto driver. Police said the couple did not have a harmonious relationship and Ahmed went to his home in Nelamangala on January 2nd, and did not return.

“On Tuesday afternoon, Ahmed got a call from the house owner that Kumuda had not opened the door of her house for two days. On breaking open the door, they found her dead on her bed. Two dogs were found dead too and two other dogs were barely alive. They succumbed that night at a hospital. A cat which was inside a cage was found dead while a parakeet kept in another cage was alive and is being taken care of by People for Animals,” said a senior police officer.

Kumuda’s friend Yamuna who knew her for several years said she was taking care of 20 dogs and 11 cats till last year. “She would always show up when animals had to be rescued. She would foster them too, including huge dogs rescued from breeders. Her uncle who was supporting her financially passed away four months ago and she slipped into depression. At one point of time she lived well but she had to shift houses because neighbours would complain about her pets.”


Amogh, another friend of Kumuda’s said she had recently started giving away her pets because she could not afford to take care of them. “Two of her cats died last week due to the cold weather and she decided to give two more cats to me. She decided to keep one cat which was blind, which was found dead on Tuesday. I had helped her move houses recently.”

Pradeep, an auto driver who would help her along with Amogh to rescue pets, said that she was suffering from cardiac problems and depression. “Of late, she was not able to take care of animals. For days she would not feed them or clean up after them.”

Dr. Lohith HD, a veterinary surgeon said that normally dogs can survive for almost 15-20 days without food. “ In this case, our doctor who treated the two dogs who were barely alive when they were brought into the clinic, said they were not sick, nor did they seem to be starving. We suspect that they were poisoned.”

Madanayakanahalli police said that they have registered a case and are awaiting the results of the post mortem.

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Sagar Biswas

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