Poorva Joshipura, 40, is Chief Executive Officer of PETA India and Vice President of International Operations with PETA Foundation.
Campaigns Joshipura has run and led span all areas of PETA India and PETA UK’s work including helping stop cruelty to animals used for meat, leather, experimentation and entertainment. These campaigns have been widely covered by major Indian and British media, as well as media internationally. Joshipura is a regular guest on television news and radio shows through which she encourages viewers and listeners to take actions to help stop cruelty to animals.
Now that the Supreme Court of India has confirmed a ban on Jallikattu -- a cruel male entertainment popular in some parts of Tamil Nadu, in which bulls are deliberately chased -- frightened and tormented, proponents of the “sport” are claiming it is somehow essential to the preservation of native cattle breeds. What a bunch of bull!
Does an animal have to be easy to imagine curled up on our sofa for us to determine whether it should be spared the butcher's knife? There is no rational reason for making a dog your friend and a chicken your dinner -- the distinction is simply down to prejudice and cultural norms.
In light of the knowledge that cows and buffalo are sensitive, intelligent individuals, can we truly consider ourselves feminists if we limit our concern for females to those of our own species? I don't think so.
The charged atmosphere at the rally would have added to Shaktimaan's natural nervousness as horses are high-strung, and this incident just proves once again that animals and political rallies don't mix.
They purposely disorient the bulls by force-feeding them alcohol; twist and bite their tails; stab and jab them with sickles, spears, knives and sticks; cause them intense pain by yanking their nose ropes; and punch, jump on and drag them to the ground. What is fair, let alone remotely masculine, about this deliberate weakening of animals? It's disgusting and shameful, not macho in the slightest.
I understand the importance of having the opportunity to make one's own decisions. In fact, because of my immense respect for personal choice, in my teens I became vegetarian and later vegan, and today I'm happy about these meat bans.
PETA's investigation of dairy factory farms across India also documented that animals are crudely and painfully artificially inseminated, denied veterinary care and forced to stand and lie in piles of their own faeces.
It is deeply irresponsible of the NHRC to make a comparison between two vital social-justice issues and essentially dismiss one in favour of the other, especially when a failure to protect animals often results in a failure to protect humans, too.
If you recycle, turn off the lights when you leave a room, refuse to drive a gas-guzzling vehicle and try not to use too much paper, you might think you have made a significant contribution towards the environment. But wait, what are your shoes made of?
What does having a bit of "fun" with a fake shark have to do with the plight of real sharks? Well, what the public thinks of sharks makes all the difference between rallying to save them and permitting them to be hunted to extinction.
Concerned about the plight of the elephants who were ultimately used at Kerala's recent Thrissur Pooram event, animal-protection advocate and actor Pamela Anderson sent a respectful letter to the Chief Minister of Kerala to contribute the cost of providing life-size, realistic and portable elephants made of bamboo and papier-mâché to replace real ones in the event. While Anderson's heartfelt offer was met with support by some people, others took to social media to post sexually explicit insults and personal attacks.
I have personally investigated the transport and slaughter of cows in India. They are either marched to slaughter or crammed onto vehicles in such high numbers that often their bones break and many of them die en route from suffocation or injuries.
You can't get swine flu from eating "properly handled and prepared pork" or avian flu from "properly handled and cooked poultry and eggs", which means that all bets may be off with regard to pork and poultry products that are improperly handled accidentally. As long as people eat meat and eggs, they'll continue to put all of us at risk of contracting swine-origin influenza viruses, avian flu and other potentially deadly illnesses.
A recent <a href="http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10584-014-1169-1" target="_hplink">Oxford University study</a> suggests that people who eat meat are responsible for almost twice as many dietary greenhouse-gas emissions per day as vegetarians and about two-and-a-half times as many emissions as vegans (people who avoid all animal products). In fact, the study found that people who eat more than 3.5 ounces of meat per day--about the size of a deck of playing cards--generate 15.8 pounds of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) each day, while vegetarians and vegans generate 8.4 pounds and 6.4 pounds of CO2e, respectively.