For Immediate Release:
2 June 2011
‘I Can’t Be a Silent Spectator to This Abuse Anymore’, Says Bollywood Beauty to City Officials
Mumbai – On behalf of her friends at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India, award-winning Bollywood star and former Miss Sri Lanka Jacqueline Fernandez has sent a letter to Subodh Kumar, Municipal Commissioner of the Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai. In the letter, Fernandez urges Kumar to do everything he can to stop cruel horse-drawn carriage rides in Mumbai. The letter comes in the wake of a recent incident in which a horse collapsed after being forced to pull a heavy carriage near Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus – an all-too-common occurrence among horses who are used for “joy rides” in the city.
“I have observed so many similar heartbreaking incidents, and I can’t be a silent spectator to this abuse anymore”, writes Fernandez, recipient of an International Indian Film Academy Award and a Stardust Award for Best Female Debut for her role in the film Aladin.
Fernandez goes on to discuss a PETA investigation which found that horses used for carriage rides were kept in filthy, damp stables and left to stand amidst their own faeces and urine. “Horses simply don’t belong on the streets, and they certainly don’t deserve to be forced to pull carriages beyond the point of exhaustion”, she writes. “I urge you to please take immediate action to stop this cruel form of entertainment.”
PETA investigators also discovered that horses are fed unwholesome food and dirty drinking water – if they receive any nourishment at all. Stables are often infested with flies and other biting insects attracted by the animals’ waste. Many horses are forced to work and stand for hours in the blazing sun without any shade.
Carts are also dangerous as horses must negotiate busy streets clogged with cars, bikes and pedestrians and are often involved in deadly accidents. Over the years, many horses and even people have been seriously injured and killed.
Jacqueline Fernandez’s letter is available upon request. For more information, please visit PETAIndia.com.