A PETA India undercover investigation reveals filth, disease and cruelty in India's fishing industry.
Watch the video that exposes the cruelty and suffering that go into every piece of leather, fur, wool, and exotic skin that you wear, then ask yourself and everyone you know, "Whose skin are you in?"
compassionate students, sane teachers and others who hold a stake in the
country's educational system have dreaded the dissection of animals in zoology
and life-science courses. That is why I take particular pleasure in reporting
that the University Grants Commission (UGC) has accepted the recommendation of its
core expert committee – on which it has been my pleasure to serve – to end
animal dissection in university and college laboratories for zoology and life-sciences
courses. The recommended change will also require universities to adhere to the
Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1960 as well as the Wildlife Protection
Act 1972, which prohibits the killing of amphibians and certain insects.
The UGC expert-committee
recommendation, which was forwarded to the Indian government's Department of
Science and Technology, the Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD) and the
UGC legal advisor for input, has recently been given the nod. The expert
committee is currently preparing to finalise guidelines on the basis of
approved recommendations to be sent to all Indian universities. Following their
implementation, it is expected that by the turn of the coming academic session,
undergraduate and postgraduate zoology and life-sciences students will no
longer be required to dissect animals as part of their practical curriculum.
good news not only for animals but also for our college and university
students. Humane alternatives to the deliberate killing of animals – including modern
pedagogical tools such as computer–based multimedia simulators, virtual labs, specialised
interactive CD-ROMs, films, charts, lifelike models and high-resolution images
and videos of dissections performed by experts – will take over the traditional
and cruel practices of the past to teach morphology, anatomy, physiology and
the like in an effective manner. This will also give freedom of conscience to young
people who opt to enrol in biology courses. I estimate that employing these
alternatives will save roughly 19 million animals belonging to a variety of
species, from fish to mammals. In addition, the adoption of these non-animal
methods will deal a death blow to the well-organised nexus between educational
institutions and those who catch, kill and supply animals.
is not just cruel, it is also antiquated. Studies have shown that non-animal
methods teach anatomy and complex biological processes as well as or better
than do animal laboratories, and they have proved much more effective and humane.
At the same time, their use will save universities an enormous amount of money compared
to the expense of purchasing animals year after year.
is well known that countless frogs, mice, rats, guinea pigs and rabbits have suffered
and died each year for life-sciences courses. Inspections of breeding businesses have
discovered ill and wounded animals crammed inside soiled cages, rats embalmed
alive and workers who killed frogs by slamming their heads against hard surfaces.
In school laboratories, live animals are often pinned down and cut open, while
others are improperly euthanised. No wonder many students avoid these courses
entirely. Very few students who dissect animals in zoology and life-science
courses will ever have to cut into an animal later in life, so the minor
anatomical knowledge and dissection skills acquired by dissection have little to
no real use in most students' subsequent careers. Even medical and veterinary
students around the world increasingly gain their knowledge from non-animal
methods and observation of procedures as they are performed on actual patients.
the preservative used to embalm animals, has been linked to cancer of the throat,
lungs and nasal passages as well as a variety of other health problems, so it
poses an additional threat to student dissectors. Dissection also desensitises
students to animal suffering by promoting the disturbing notion that it is
acceptable to inflict misery and death on animals.
The recommendations finally accepted by the UGC
restore to life sciences
and zoological education the concept of ahimsa, or
non-violence, which is vital to maintaining our reputation as a nation with
traditional values and a compassionate disposition. I encourage educators, administrators, parents, students
and policymakers at all levels to continue to work together to replace outmoded
dissection and animal experiments with superior, modern non-animal approaches for
the good of everyone involved. To learn more, visit PETA India.com.
Dr BK Sharma is an associate professor and the head of
the Department of Zoology at RL Saharia Govt PG
College (affiliated with the University of Rajasthan, Jaipur), Kaladera 303801,
Jaipur, Rajasthan, as well as a key member
of the UGC-MHRD Core Expert Committee to Consider Discontinuation of Dissection
of Animals in Zoology/Life Science in Indian Universities and Colleges. He can
be reached on firstname.lastname@example.org.
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