Following the removal of animal tests from the cosmetics testing standards by the PCD 19 Cosmetics Sectional Committee of the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) last year, the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare has now published the cosmetic testing ban, which adds the new rule “148-C. prohibition of testing of cosmetics on animals – No person shall use any animal for testing of cosmetics” to the existing Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945. This marks a significant victory for animals in India, because while standards under the BIS can undergo change, this addition to the law means that any changes made can never include animal tests. And because the definition of “cosmetics” under the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945, includes any article intended for use as a component of cosmetic, the ban on animal testing should apply to ingredients, too. The removal of animal tests from the standards and this progress follows an intense campaign by PETA India and work by MP Maneka Gandhi and others.
Recently, the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare also published a cosmetic testing ban to further amend the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules, 1945, which if passed would ban the import of cosmetics to India that have been tested on animals anywhere in the world. If introduced, the new rule may state, “135-B. Import of cosmetics tested on animals prohibited. – No cosmetic tested on animals shall be imported”.
During cosmetics tests, harsh chemicals may be dripped into rabbits’ eyes, smeared onto animals’ abraded skin or forced down their throats.
To support the draft import ban, please send comments to Secretary Nirman Bhawan, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, New Delhi 110011, by 18 June. You may also:
Until there is a sales ban on cosmetics that have been tested on animals, please be sure to buy only cruelty-free cosmetics from PETA’s approved-companies list.