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Tuesday, January 24, 2006

friends of animals

The SPCA plays a vital role in our day-to-day lives. The Animal Welfare Board of India was set up in accordance with Section 4 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1960 (No.59 of 1960). The Board consists of 28 Members.

To a layman, these groups are supposed to ensure that animals get their proper share of attention. The condition of animals seen in circuses are pathetic, to tame the ferocious ones, the keepers would keep them half starved. Even in houses, parrots and budgerigars would be caged and dogs and cats ill treated. The Society of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has the authority of taking action against the erring individuals or groups. Hunting once upon a time used to be a favorite pastime of the Rajas, Maharajas, Zaminders and others of noble descent. They would spend weekends in the company of friends in the deep jungles and bring back prized catches. Such extravaganza today is completely out of the question. In some movies, animals are used – here again, approvals are required to be obtained in advance. The gist of the matter is that the ill treatment of the dumb creatures cannot be tolerated.

However, a few recent ad clips showcase birds and animals. Pigeons fly away in fear when the latest brand of Hero Honda ‘Pleasure’ makes its presence. The poor doggy in the ad of Hutch keeps panting, trudging up steep steps, and is forced to walk the plank to keep pace with its master and, in the bargain, prove a point or two for the makers. The Tiger is tamed by kids in the Britannia biscuit ads, even the Moms make fun of the animal that is gradually getting phased out. A gaudy colored Kingfisher watches in amusement at the goings on while a flock of geese scatters to allow Rani Mukherji forge ahead with her extra large special quota of Nestle ‘Maha Munch’. A time may come when Tom and Jerry cartoons and those involving Donald Duck and Mickey Mouse will be censored because of the cruelty shown to the animals. The monkeys in the Suman Shekhar ‘Pole Khol’ show might also have to make way for humans. Proposals might also be put forth to rename the ‘Black Cat Commandoes’ along with the Cheetah and Chetak helicopters and the Jaguar fighter planes.

Animals are to be treated withy respect. Showing animals in bad light constitutes unfair and unhealthy business practices and has to be discouraged.


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