SC takes on the pet shop industry - a tale of horrific abuse of the voiceless and men profiteering f
On 30th June 2016, the Hon'ble Supreme Court of India issued notices to the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) and also the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI), asking that why have the pet shop rules (which go a long way in eliminating the cruelty in pet shops) not notified yet?! These rules have been drafted by the AWBI and placed before the MoEF&CC, in 2010 itself but nothing has been done! these rules are just gathering dust. God knows why?!? maybe because the pups are who separated from their mothers at birth do not get enough votes in the next election?
This was done when we petitioned the SC with a Public Interest Litigation, represented by Senior Lawyer Prashant Bhushan Sir. Prashant Bhushan Sir told the court that the pet shop industry is full of horrors like pulling out claws of kittens without anaesthesia, drugging puppies, cutting of beaks of bird with hot knives. And the impact is not only on the animals but also affects humans as it is a public health risk - for example the dead bodies of animals are just thrown in the household waste and sometimes even just buried in the neighbourhood, which then contaminates the ground water. It is said that such pet shops also spread bird flu because of the diseases of the birds are then spread in the nearby residential colonies.
The SC on hearing all this issued notices to the MoEF&CC and also the AWBI, asking for their replies.
We cannot thank Prashant Bhushan Sir enough for appearing for us and bringing this issue to the national attention!
The hearing was covered by PTI (Press Trust of India) over here - link
Lots of people ask us that why bother about animals when such atrocities are committed against humans. We simply say that we are fulfilling our constitutional duty under Article 51A(g) which says we should have compassion for animals and also don't forget - that studies say that those who abuse animals eventually move on to attacking women and children. We have places several of such studies in the Supreme Court of India also. Also in this pet shop case - if they are not regulated then it is a ticking time bomb as we are facing the risk of a severe outbreak of animal borne diseases that will affect all humans. We need not mention how many died by swine flu and bird flue. point being - it affects us all and more importantly - it is not animal rights but more about human responsibility!