SRINAGAR: Three days after Indian army allegedly crushed 13 horses under its armoured vehicles at Kulgam’s Frisal village in south Kashmir, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), an international organisation for protection of animal rights has asked India’s minister of defence Manohar Parrikar to initiate an inquiry, followed by strict action against army men, if found guilty.
In a letter to Parrikar, a copy of which is with Kashmir Reader, PETA has said that the acts of cruelty to animals like this one are indicative of a deep mental disturbance of the perpetrators. “The research in psychology and criminology shows that people who commit acts of cruelty to animals often don’t stop there. Many of them move on to hurting other animals, children, women or other humans,” PETA said.
“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 computer records of serious rapists and murderers. In India, too, Veerappan was a serious killer and poacher, and the infamous Noida serial murder of children took place at the home of Moninder Singh Pandher, who was fond of hunting. In a study of battered women, nearly 60 per cent said that they had partners who had harmed or killed their dogs or other animal,” the letter reads.
On Sunday, a speeding vehicle had rammed into the livestock of nomads (Bakerwals), crushing 13 horses and injuring many. The Bakerwal shepherds who were returning to their villages in Rajouri district after spending the summer months in highland pastures in Kashmir Valley. The nomads were returning from pahalgam pastures to Sunderbani, Rajouri in the wee hours of Monday morning.
A copy of the letter written by Meet Ashar, who is also honorary animal welfare officer of statutory body of animal welfare board of India was also sent to chief minister Mehbooba Mufti, chief secretary BR Sharma and director general of JK police K Rajendra Kumar.
Citing the law of the animal act and section 34 and 429 of the Indian Penal Code, the letter said that whosoever commits mischief by killing any horse (or other animals) shall be punished with imprisonment or fine or both.