AWBI cancels registration of 5 circuses; recommends appropriate legislation for welfare of animals The Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) has cancelled the registration of 5 circuses namely Great Golden Circus, Ahmedabad; Asiad Circus, Kanpur; Apollo Circus, Maujpur (Delhi), Rayman Circus, Kanpur; and Nataraj Circus; Kolkata. AWBI took this action in compliance with certain directions...
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AWBI cancels registration of 5 circuses; recommends appropriate legislation for welfare of animals
The Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) has cancelled the registration of 5 circuses namely Great Golden Circus, Ahmedabad; Asiad Circus, Kanpur; Apollo Circus, Maujpur (Delhi), Rayman Circus, Kanpur; and Nataraj Circus; Kolkata.
AWBI took this action in compliance with certain directions passed by the Delhi High Court while hearing a Petition filed by the Federation for Indian Animal Protection Organisations (FIAPO)seeking to rescue animals in circuses due to COVID-19 pandemic and challenging the law that permits use of animals in circuses.
FIAPO was represented by Sr. Advocate Mr. Dayan Krishnan & Advocate Mr. Ambuj Agrawal.
FIAPO Executive Director, Varda Mehrotra said, "It is great that the Board has finally woken up to the harsh reality of ineffectiveness of the current statutory regime when it comes to Circuses and suffering of circus animals. In the modern society, there is no place for human entertainment at the cost of suffering of animals."
The AWBI has cancelled the registrations as during the inspection of these circuses either the circuses were not found at their registered addresses or if found there were no animals at the location nor did the circus owners disclose the location of the animals which are registered under The Performing Animals (Registration) Rules, 2001.
The Central Zoo Authority in November had also recommended to cancel recognition of the Great Golden Circus under Section 38-H (6) of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, l972.
In addition to cancelling the registration of these 5 circuses, the AWBI has also issued show cause notices to 2 circuses for gross violation and discrepancies under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960, The Performing Animals (Registration) Rules, 2001 & Wildlife Protection Act, 1972as found during the inspection conducted as per the order of the Hon'ble Court.
Further, the AWBI has also requested the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying to pass appropriate legislation considering the current status of circuses under The Performing Animals (Registration) Rules, 2001.
The Hon'ble Supreme Court in its Judgment in the A. Nagaraja case has already held that entertainment is not an exception to the Rights and freedoms guaranteed to Animals, which include freedom from pain, fear, distress and injury. Therefore, the use of animals in circuses should be banned urgently so that circus animals can live with honour and dignity, and be treated with compassion.
FIAPO through its campaign End Circus Suffering, since 2015, together with its member organisations & volunteers – have till now rescued more than 150 animals from 13 circuses across India and has mobilised 114 activists, from 45 organisations across 18 states.
FIAPO (Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organisations) is India's leading animal protection body. As a collective voice for the animal protection community in India, FIAPO unites all animal protection organisations nationwide acting as their resource and information centre to exchange ideas, build expertise and take action to strengthen the animal rights movement in the country. FIAPO works with over 160 member organisations, 200 supporter organisations and over 1000 activists in more than 70 cities across India. They are the largest Federation in the country and one of the (two) largest movement-building organisations in the world.