Cricketer Wayne Parnell Strips Down To Stop Indian Circus Cruelty

New PETA Campaign Calls for Ban on the Use of Wild Animals in Circuses

For Immediate Release:
27 May 2011

Benazir Suraiya +91 90045 47382; [email protected]
Anu Chowdhary +91 22 40727382; [email protected]

Mumbai – South African cricketer Wayne Parnell has set his sights on a new opponent: circuses that force wild animals to perform unnatural and painful tricks. In a new anti-circus ad for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India, the Pune Warriors bowler appears shirtless and bound by chains next to the words, “Try to Relate to Their Fate. Say NO to Animal Circuses”. The ad was shot by ace photographer Himanshu Seth, and Ayesha Wadiwala did the make-up. The ad – along with Parnell’s exclusive interview with PETA– can be seen at

“I choose to participate in sport, but the animals used in circuses aren’t given any choice at all”, says Parnell. “Animals in circuses suffer a lifetime of abuse – all for a few cheap tricks.”

Animals in circuses are subjected to chronic confinement, physical abuse and psychological torment. Whips and other tools – including ankuses, which are heavy, steel-tipped rods – are often used to inflict pain on animals and beat them into submission. Animals perform confusing, unnatural tricks – such as riding bicycles, standing on their heads or jumping through rings of fire – not because they want to, but out of fear of this violent punishment.

Even when they aren’t performing, animals in circuses suffer a lifetime of misery. Their access to water, food and veterinary care may be severely restricted. Dogs are crammed into dirty cages and rarely let out, and birds have their wings clipped so that they cannot fly and are confined to small cages. Horses are kept tethered on short ropes, and elephants are kept tied by three legs. Even though the government has banned the use of bears, monkeys, tigers, panthers and lions in performances, some of these animals continue to be illegally used in entertainment acts, including street performances.

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