For Immediate Release:
8 July 2011
Benazir Suraiya; [email protected]
Dr Chaitanya Kumar; [email protected]
Investigation Demonstrates Need to Fire Staff Responsible for Suffering, Stop Animal Experiments and Rehabilitate Animals, Says Group
Dehradun, Uttarakhand – Following an investigation by People for Animals (PFA) Uttarakhand – which documented filthy conditions and widespread mistreatment of animals at the Himalaya Institute of Medical Sciences’ (HIMS) Animal House Facility that resulted in a government order to HIMS to suspend all animal experiments immediately – People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India has written to Dr Vijay Dhasmana, vice chancellor of the Himalayan Institute Hospital Trust University, urging him to call a permanent halt to animal use at the facility, rehabilitate the animals who have undergone experiments and dismiss the dean who was responsible for the laboratory’s filthy conditions and illegal operations.
“It is imperative to the reputation of the institution to show respect for the law and the animals it seeks to protect by ensuring that the rabbits, guinea pigs and mice now at HIMS will no longer suffer. But at this very moment, there is nothing to stop the dean from inflicting even more abuse”, says PETA India’s science policy advisor, Dr Chaitanya Koduri. “The dean must be dismissed from his position without delay, and HIMS needs to end all animal experiments permanently and rehabilitate the animals who have already suffered under his watch.”
PFA documented the following violations at HIMS’ facility:
• HIMS employees reported that the dean – who bears responsibility for the laboratory’s conditions – enjoys breaking animals’ bones. Employees also stated that anyone who complained about the conditions for animals was either punished or dismissed.
• Animals who survived the experiments were not rehabilitated. Instead, janitorial staff were instructed to take them to the Chilla Forest and leave them there, potentially exposing wildlife to diseases from the laboratory.
• Approximately two dozen animals were used in experiments; no regular records of these tests or of the animals’ conditions were kept.
• Two rabbits were found to be suffering from scabies, and no records were found of any veterinary care or any purchase or use of anaesthesia.
• Rabbits, guinea pigs, rats and mice were kept in unventilated rooms in cages that were not intended for laboratory use. Their food and water was contaminated with urine and faecal matter.
• HIMS used and killed Rana tigrina frogs – a protected species under Schedule 4 of the Wildlife Protection Act 1972 – in experiments.
PETA’s letter to Dr Vijay Dhasmana, vice chancellor of the Himalayan Institute Hospital Trust University, is available upon request. For more information, please visit PETAIndia.org.