Animal Welfare... New Trends...

Date: 2010-11-04
Roxanne Davur, Animal Cruelty,
The first steps for animal welfare in India were taken in 1860 - with two paragraphs in the Indian Penal Code of 1860 and then fortified and extended in 1960 with the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, which has been a temple plate for many other countries' laws around the world, though rarely enforced in India.
However in 1998 - education and power was instituted by Ms. Maneka Gandhi as she took over as the Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment and since then the Animal Care Movement has expanded powerfully. It gives hope to find that the youth of our country has a growing sense of Justice and Correctness than their seniors - who has the chalte hai attitude.
In past few years there has been a sudden jump in youngsters joining the Animal welfare organizations or fighting cruelty against animals as an individual activist, a part credit of which goes to the internet for providing open communication and networking platform. Without a doubt these new activists have a great cause to fight for, but inexperience and aggression of the young blood really worries some senior activists and welfare officers.
There were few incidents that we were told about where young activists have ended in serious trouble or may have violated laws in certain critical situation just because they were unaware of the right methods and laws. To our surprise, many of experienced activist were unaware of the right methods and laws as well. To make situation worst, there has been mounting differences between activists pertaining to the methods used, where most of them are wrong themselves.
To tackle the serious problem, a senior and a well known animal welfare officer Mrs. Roxanne Davur from Karjat has organized number of seminars to educate the right and effective methods to youngsters and inexperienced activist fighting against animal cruelty of which two are already conducted. Mrs. Davur has fought against animal cruelty for more then 40 years now. The first was held on 16-Oct-10 and second on 30th Oct.
In the first seminar on 16th October, Mrs. Davur explained about the laws relating to animal cruelty, rescue, and possession of animals. “The Law pertaining to animal cruelty, has not changed much since 1860 when it was first put in force”, Said Mrs. Davur. She explained further by giving some examples you can see below
Description: Chapter III - Cruelty to Animal Generally, under Prevention of Cruelty to Animal Act, 1960,Section 11, (1) (a)
If any person -
Beats, kicks, over rides, over drives, tortures or otherwise treats any animal so as to subject it to unnecessary pain or suffering or causes or being the owner permits, any animal to be so treated. 
Punishment: He shall be Punishable, in the case of first offence, with fine that shall not be less than 10 Rupees but which may extend to 50 Rupees and in case of second of subsequent offense committed within three years of the previous offense, with fine which shall not be less than 55 rupees but may extend to 100 Rupees or with imprisonment of for a term which may extend to three months, or with both.
Ms Davur pointed out today’s laughable fines - She said, “remember the times these fines were chosen and the average salary at that time, which shows how strongly the Government of India reacted to Animal cruelty in those days”.
She added further, “having right knowledge of the law and methods is essential for fighting against animal cruelty, each activist and NGO should get themselves familiar to the rules and use them appropriately, rather then running around senselessly. Another important point is to get a good relation with your local police and behaving with them in courteous manner rather then hammering them for your cause”.
She also added, “Since most of the police officers themselves don’t know the rules pertaining to animal cruelty it is essential that you carry three books with you to help police know the right actions to be taken”. Following are the names of the three books she gave.
  1. The Indian Penal Code, 1860, Bare acts, published by Current Publication,
  2. The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960, Published by Commercial Law Publishers,
  3. The Wild Life Protection Act, 1972, Published by Commercial Law Publishers.
Further in the seminar Mrs. Davur discussed about NGOs and activists that are not clear about what service they provide and don’t have proper tie-ups for other types of services that they are requested for. She added, “There are number of different services in animal welfare. To be most effective, NGOs and activists have to learn to work in harmony. After all our aim is to do animal welfare and not just built our own personal credentials”.
Another speaker Nilesh Bhanage classified types of NGO services in 12 categories:
  1. ABC Center
  2. Shelter
  3. Adoption Center / Re-homing
  4. Wild life hospital / Orphanage / Rescue
  5. Cruelty Cases
  6. Cattle Shelter
  7. Ambulance Services
  8. Feeding / Society Cases
  9. Pet Cases
  10. Database
  11. Vet Services
  12. Volunteer / Staff Services
A very good point discussed in the seminar was about how animal cruelty affects our life, irrespective of if you care about animals or not. The statistics show that cruelty on an animal is the first step the person takes in the criminal world. In other words it is as horrifying and dangerous to society as crimes against children. A study conducted in USA shows that 100% of criminals on Death Row started with animal cruelties and 70% of them worked in Slaughter houses. Make no mistakes these are serious issues that everyone must address in order to live a safer society. Stopping the animal cruelty can put a steep fall in crime rate against humans. Remember, callousness and cruelties to animals automatically extend to women and children.
Over all the Seminar was quite informative and in our opinion all the activists and NGOs must attend the upcoming seminars. Today’s tough situation and the limited time we have in hand demands serious measures and combined efforts to stop the cruelty to animals. congratulates Mrs. Roxanne Davur on a well conducted and successful seminar. We are looking forward to attend the rest of the days.      

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