Dozens of ‘Elephants’ to Call for End to Rides

For Immediate Release:

22 August 2019

Contact:

Ayushi Sharma; [email protected]

Garima Jain; [email protected]

PETA India and Innayat Will Demand That Cruel Treatment Stops

Jaipur – Wearing elephant masks and wrapped in chains, about three dozen members of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India and the youth organisation Innayat will gather in Jaipur and unleash clouds of red powder into the air, reminiscent of the blood of the elephants who are violently absued for cruel and apparently illegal rides at Amer Fort and elsewhere.

When:             Friday, 23 August, 12 noon sharp

Where:           Outside the Albert Hall Museum, Museum Road, Jaipur

“Elephants used for joyrides are torn away from their mothers as babies, beaten into submission, and forced to carry heavy loads of tourists, even as they go blind and suffer from contagious diseases,” says PETA India Campaigns Coordinator Ayushi Sharma. “PETA India is urging travellers to skip the elephant rides at Amer Fort and anywhere else around the world.”

Often when they’re just 2 years old, baby elephants are torn away from their mothers and either tied up between trees with heavy chains and ropes – which cause painful burns – or confined to a cramped wooden enclosure called a kraal. Trainers then beat the young elephants with sticks and jab them with sharp, hooked ankuses to break their spirits and force them to obey – and trainers continue to yank, jab, and thrash the animals in order to force them to perform or give rides throughout their lives.

Last year, a report by inspectors authorised by the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) found that some elephants used for rides at Amer Fort were visually impaired, some tested reactive for tuberculosis – which is transmissible to humans – and they were forced to carry loads heavier than the legal maximum of 200 kilograms. In addition, these rides are apparently illegal, because none of the elephants used are registered with the AWBI, in apparent violation of the Performing Animals (Registration) Rules, 2001, framed under The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960, as well as the 2010 order of the Rajasthan government mandating that the use of elephants in any type of performance – including rides – requires permission from the AWBI.

Earlier this year, after learning from PETA India that an elephant named Malti – also referred to as “No 44” – was recently subjected to abuse by her handlers in view of the public for the second time in less than two years, while she was being used for rides at Amer Fort, Rajasthan Minister for Forest & Environment Shri Sukhram Vishnoi directed the chief wildlife warden of Rajasthan to take strict and immediate action to ensure that she was rescued and rehabilitated.

More than 50 travel agencies – including global operators such as TripAdvisor, The Travel Corporation, Intrepid Travel, smarTours, STA Travel, and TUI Group – have committed to not offering activities that exploit elephants.

PETA India – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment” – opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETAIndia.com.

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