Monday, 22 August 2011

Activists demand action against animal performances

CHENNAI: Animal lovers are demanding strict action against people using monkeys as performing animals. Last week, Blue Cross volunteers rescued five monkeys with the help of city police from Marina beach.

Nanditha Krishna, director of CPR Environmental Research Centre, said the environment ministry had recently added monkeys and bulls to the list of animals that could not be used for performances. "Animals used for the performances and festivals undergo cruel training. Taking action against such practices will raise awareness among the public who watch monkey performances on the beaches," said Krishna. 

Monkey performing in a street show

On Tuesday evening, the Blue Cross received a call from people who saw a group carrying monkeys. Don Williams, a volunteer, said, "We informed the Marina beach police station and when we reached the spot along with police, the four monkey handlers disappeared leaving the monkeys behind." Passersby helped them catch the panic-stricken monkeys. "The animals were later handed over to forest officials," said Williams. 
Though the notification from the Centre bans use of bears, bulls, panthers, monkeys, lions and tigers in performances, animal lovers want elephants included on the list as well. Bulls were most recently added to the list of animals banned from performances. "We take necessary action when we receive a complaint about animal performances," said a senior wildlife and forest department official.

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