Colombo, Jul 17 (AFP) A Sri Lankan university was fending off allegations of animal cruelty after being accused of inhumanely killing dozens of cats and dogs in a mass cull on campus.

Tranquiliser darts were used to sedate the stray animals at the prestigious University of Moratuwa but many died from the dose, activists said today.

“This is cruel and brutal treatment of animals and we want action taken against those responsible,” animal rights activist Wibodha Ambeygoda told AFP.

She said university authorities removed paralysed animals from the campus and dumped them 20 kilometres (12 miles) away to die.

A spokesman for the university said a private company was contracted to cull the stray animals from the campus.

Sri Lanka has strict flora and fauna laws, and cruelty to animals is punishable with up to five years in jail.

Six people were jailed in March last year after posting photos online showing them skinning a sea eagle alive. (AFP) SG

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.