15 May : For its leadership in defending animals, PETA has been named the Largest Animal Rights Organisation by the Limca Book of Records. Similar to the Guinness Book of World Records, the Limca Book of Records emphasises the unique achievements of Indians at home and abroad.The Limca Book of Records recognises PETA “for making a better place for animals to live”. PETA has not only ignited grassroots-level awareness, it has also contributed to policymaking and policy-changing decisions which the government has incorporated. Authorities have had to buckle to PETA’s pressure and to recognise the importance of animals and their welfare. The following are just some of the achievements PETA India has made since its inception in 2001:
· At PETA’s urging, the West Bengal Board of Secondary Education ended deadly animal experiments in 2008.
· After PETA exposed cruel laboratory conditions at the National Institute of Virology in Pune, 39 animals who had been kept there were confiscated and taken to a rehabilitation centre.
· A PETA campaign led to a ban in 2007 on the entry of elephants into the city of Mumbai. Since then, 15 other states have passed similar regulations that prevent elephants from entering cities. This has reduced the dangers that these smart, vulnerable animals face.
· PETA’s petition drive – which was backed by many Bollywood stars – resulted in an order by the controller of rationing that prohibited using bullocks to pull heavy oil tankers in the city of Mumbai.
· Since arranging the successful release into the wild of a baby crane who had been confined to a Lucknow zoo, PETA has helped rescue scores of other animals who are now living in peace at rehabilitation centres and sanctuaries.
· PETA has rescued 12 lions and tigers from the Grand National Circus, 19 lions and tigers from Empire Circus, six tigers from the Olympic Circus, five lions from the Western Circus and seven lions, four tigers, one camel, two goats, three dogs, five turkeys and three geese from the Great Royal Circus.
“To be recognised by the Limca Book of Records is a great honour”, says PETA India’s chief functionary, Anuradha Sawhney. “Animal rights is a movement whose time has come, and the support and recognition that PETA India has garnered shows that people are ready to make this a kinder world for all beings.”