PETA India Calls on Mumbai Police to Prevent Another Nirbhaya-Like Case

For Immediate Release:

24 August 2018


Meet Ashar; [email protected]

Garima Jain; [email protected]

Group Demands Strong Action Against Security Guard Who Allegedly Raped Female Dog With Sharp Object, Killing Her

Mumbai – People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India has fired off a letter to the Police Commissioner of Mumbai asking for Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860, to be added to the First Information Report (FIR) which was registered against a security guard for allegedly raping a stray female dog by forcing a sharp object into her vagina, causing her internal organs to prolapse and resulting in her death. The groups warns that if released, the man could go on to abuse a human in the same way. Indeed, the woman known as “Nirbhaya” was infamously raped and killed with a rod. Based on the complaint of Abhishek Kapdoskar, a member of Mumbai Animal Association – an organisation working for the welfare of stray animals in Mumbai – the Samta Nagar police filed an FIR on 22 August. It was registered only under Section 429 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860, and Sections 11(1)(a) and (l) of The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PCA) Act, 1960. Now, PETA India has urged the police to include Section 377 of the former in order to ensure that the accused is also charged with bestiality – sexual assault of an animal by a human.

“Violent people often start by abusing animals and then move on to targeting human victims, so this case should worry everyone,” says PETA India Emergency Response Coordinator Meet Ashar. “PETA India calls for anyone found harming animals to be punished to the fullest extent of the law and requests that the government strengthen penalties for abusing animals – for the safety of the entire community.”

Acts of cruelty to animals such as this one indicate a deep mental disturbance. Research in psychology and criminology shows that people who commit acts of cruelty to animals often don’t stop there – many move on to hurting humans. And the US Federal Bureau of Investigation has found that a history of cruelty to animals is one of the traits that regularly appear in its records of serial rapists and murderers.

One US study conducted over a 21-year period found that 70 per cent of people who abused animals went on to commit other crimes and about two-thirds of them also assaulted a human. It also found that 100 per cent of individuals convicted of sexual homicide had a history of cruelty to animals. And importantly, another US study found that 96 per cent of offenders who had engaged in bestiality also admitted to having sexually assaulted humans.

Examples of such individuals include Ameerul Islam, who used to rape and kill dogs and goats before he was sentenced to death for raping and murdering law student Jisha in Kerala. Convicted criminal Joseph Bateson of Northern Ireland – who allegedly sexually assaulted farmed animals – was found guilty of 17 counts of gross indecency with a child and indecent assault after he sexually abused a 6-year-old boy. And American criminal Jerry Cook was convicted of cruelty to animals and assault and battery following an incident in which he raped a dog – fatally injuring her in the process – and attacked the owner of a home he was burgling. Cook’s history of violence began nearly two decades earlier, when he was convicted of first-degree rape of a human.

PETA India – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way” – has long campaigned to strengthen the country’s main animal-protection legislation, the PCA Act, 1960, which contains outdated penalties, such as a maximum fine of only Rs 50 for convicted first-time offenders.

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