For Immediate Release:
6 April 2010
Dharmesh Solanki (0) 9821215661; [email protected]
Mumbai / New Delhi — Today, Bollywood star Celina Jaitly has fired off a letter to the Central Zoo Authority (CZA) urging the agency to act in accordance with a recent ban and immediately transfer two elephants, Laxmi and Anarkali, from the Byculla Zoo to a sanctuary. Jaitly also urged the CZA to expedite the relocation of all captive elephants who are currently used in Indian zoos and circuses. Jaitly’s plea comes after Laxmi killed a zoo visitor last week. Elephants who are incarcerated and kept shackled in chains often become frustrated and angry and sometimes lash out. A month before the fatal incident, PETA India had asked the CZA to relocate the two aging and ailing elephants.
In the letter, Jaitly agrees with PETA’s argument that the Byculla Zoo is not capable of meeting the complex needs of elephants. Laxmi and Anarkali are often kept chained in small, separate enclosures and denied the freedom of movement and companionship. The opportunity to walk freely and interact with other elephants is essential for the animals’ physical and emotional health. Elephants used in zoos and circuses throughout India are denied what they need to thrive: space to roam, water to bathe in and the enriching environment of a herd.
“In Mumbai and other parts of India, elephants in captivity are kept in cruel conditions”, says Jaitly. “It breaks my heart to see them separated from their families as babies and sentenced to a lifetime of boredom, loneliness and abuse. I applaud the CZA’s decision that a zoo or circus environment is wholly inadequate for elephants.”
“Laxmi and Anarkali are stressed, sick and depressed”, says PETA India’s Dharmesh Solanki. “The CZA must realise that for every day that it delays the transfers, these gentle giants must endure another day of suffering.”
“Celina’s letter to the CZA is available upon request by calling Dharmesh Solanki at 9821215661. Please visit PETAIndia.com for more information.
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