Following PETA Complaint, Live-Fish Necklace to Be Withdrawn From

For Immediate Release:
16 August 2010

Benazir Suraiya 80075 93682; [email protected]
Sachin Bangera 98201 22561; [email protected]  

Only days ago, PETA fired off letters to Mumbai-based jewellery designer Laksh Pahuja, the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) and the chairman of theGem and Jewellery Export Promotion Council, which runs India International Jewellery Week (IIJW), urging them to stop Pahuja from using a fish as a living decoration in a displayed necklace during IIJW. Now, PETA has learned that Pahuja sent an e-mail to IIJW organisers stating that he will not display the cruel necklace design during the event this week. In the letter to Pahuja, PETA had asserted that confining fish to an item so small that they are not allowed any movement and subjecting them to traumatic handling would likely cause the fish injury and extreme distress and could even kill them, leaving a rotting fish around a person’s neck.

This was the second time that PETA had objected to Pahuja’s work. In 2007, the designer got flak from PETA for the same necklace design, which traps a betta fish in an acrylic block. PETA cited a review of more than 500 studies showing that fish are intelligent, sensitive animals who feel pain and fear just as all animals do.

Dr. Sylvia Earle, one of the world’s leading marine biologists, said, “I wouldn’t deliberately eat a grouper any more than I’d eat a cocker spaniel. They’re so good-natured, so curious. You know, fish really are sensitive, they have personalities, they hurt when they’re wounded”.

“We hope that Laksh Pahuja will now be creative in a harmless way”, says PETA’s chief functionary, Poorva Joshipura. “To have fashion sense and common sense, to show aesthetics and ethics, that’s the ticket”.
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