Sonakshi Sinha, Shikhar Dhawan, and Other Stars Sign PETA Petition to Strengthen the Outdated Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act
Mumbai: A line-up of stars – including John Abraham, Jacqueline Fernandez, Arjun Kapoor, Sonakshi Sinha, Raveena Tandon, Dr Kiran Bedi, Virat Kohli, Shikhar Dhawan, and Ajinkya Rahane – have signed People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India’s new petition calling on the government to strengthen animal-protection laws. PETA India is pointing to recent cases of abuse – including a 5 July incident in which two students hurled a dog, Bhadra, off a rooftop and were quickly released from jail on bail, as well as a 14 March incident in which an Uttarakhand Mounted Police horse named Shaktimaan was fatally injured lost a leg in an attack by a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislator last month lost a leg in an attack by a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislator last month lost a leg in an attack by a BharatiyaJanata Party (BJP) legislator last month– as evidence that stronger penalties need to be enacted to prevent cruelty to animals.
“India’s weak and outdated animal-protection laws are a national embarrassment, as they do very little to prevent animals from being neglected, abused, or killed”, says PETA India Chief Executive Officer Poorva Joshipura. “PETA India and its high-profile supporters are calling on the government to strengthen its penalties for cruelty to animals significantly and right away – before anyone else gets hurt.”
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PETA India – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way” – has long campaigned to strengthen India’s Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960, which contains outdated penalties, such as a maximum fine of Rs 50 for convicted first offenders who abuse or even kill an animal. PETA India’s petition calls on the government to ensure that people, who abuse animals serve jail time, pay significant fines, receive psychological counselling, and are banned from interacting with animals.