As soon as we found out that the Mumbai High Court has asked Maharashtra state to justify why it mainly serves only vegetarian food in prisons in response to the complaints of a few meat-addict inmates, we fired off a letter to Justices Desai and Ketkar explaining why prisons should be meat-free zones. Currently, Arthur Road prison is sending a positive message against violence by serving vegetarian food on most days of the year. Introducing meat would be taking a huge step backwards.
In this letter written by our nutritionist and campaign coordinator, Bhuvaneshwari Gupta, PETA India makes the compelling case that by feeding prisoners exclusively vegetarian food, the recidivism rate could be reduced, taxpayers would be saving money and prisons and prisoners would both benefit. Prisons are the last place that we should be encouraging violence, and meat involves extreme cruelty and killing. The most advantageous thing about a vegetarian diet is that it encourages compassion. Prisons around the world have successfully reduced violence with a regimen that includes vegetarian or vegan meals.
Besides inculcating compassion, a vegetarian diet is light on the pockets of the taxpayers of India, whose money goes towards funding our prisons. Beans, rice, lentils, nuts, fruit, potatoes, and vegetables contain all the nutrients a person needs but often cost a fraction of the price of meat. Also, a green diet helps keep the nation’s health-care costs to a minimum, as vegetarians are less likely to develop heart disease, obesity, cancer, strokes, and diabetes than those who consume animal products.
So making prisons meat-free zones would be a win-win situation. Help us convince the deciding authorities to choose kindness by allowing only vegetarian food to be served to prison inmates. Please write to Justices Desai and Ketkar using the following contact details:
Justice Ranjana P Desai
Mumbai High Court
Justice R G Ketkar
Mumbai High Court