BE THE VOICE FOR THE PAWS
In the national capital of India, a man was caught on CCTV attacking a dog outside his house. In the state of Karnataka, a lady smashed 8 innocent puppies. 11 monkeys were brutally killed and dumped near a highway in Rajasthan. A cow was run over and killed by a vehicle in Chhattisgarh. Wounded horses were used for marriage processions in Uttar Pradesh. These are examples of some brutal and heinous atrocities against animals. Everyday there are many such cases. But a country which does not care much about murdering people, can never care enough about killing mute animals.
In March 2020, due to the COVID-19 lockdown, there were reports of sightings of various rare species of animals in the streets and on national highways. The absence of human movement and reduced pollution prompted them to roam freely. At the same time, many strays on the roads died due to lack of food and proper care. Just like humans are finding it difficult to survive this deadly pandemic, so are animals. With no proper resources like food, medication, vaccines; many animals are deprived of the attention that they need and deserve during these tough times.
Fortunately, there are enough people on this planet who believe and understand that just like humans, animals have an equal right to live here. There are several NGOs in every city of India working for animal welfare. These people; however, are met with a good amount of hatred since other people see stray animals as a threat.
Now when we talk about stray animals it does not only include dogs and cats on the streets. Stray animals also include cows, calves, goats who were abandoned by the dairy industry. It also includes bullocks, horses, donkeys, monkeys who are used as a means of entertainment and free labour. Animals who have been displaced due to deforestation are also included in this category. Most of these animals are not properly taken care of. In India, there are limited provisions against animal abuse. Most of the clauses are covered under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act of 1960. Due to the absence of stringent laws, crimes against animals have been increasing.
Let us have a look at how the NGOs help animals. NGOs working for animal welfare conduct feeding drives across localities to ensure that stray animals in that area do not go hungry. Some NGOs go a step ahead and rescue animals from the streets and from abusive owners. They provide medical attention to the sick and tortured animals. Often these animals stay with NGOs for a long time until they can be released back or put into a shelter. NGOs also work on animal birth control programs to ensure that the population of strays is under control. These NGOs also carry out vaccination for strays. Other NGOs exclusively work for bringing justice to stray animals. They make sure that animal abusers get punished as per the legal provisions in the constitution. They are the voices for these voiceless animals.
India is home to nearly hundred million strays. Even after all efforts, NGOs cannot reach out to all the animals. Except for the larger ones, the other NGOs are severely underfunded. They don't receive many donations, neither in cash nor in kind. Feeding animals, rescuing them and paying for their medical expenses requires a good amount of money. Due to lack of empathy towards stray animals, people don't prefer donating to these NGOs. The small-scale NGOs find it difficult to survive due to lack of funds. UrGesture is working with one such NGO, POSH Foundation which is based out of Noida. POSH Foundation actively works for animal welfare and rescue. Not only do they create awareness against animal cruelty, they also encourage adoption of the animals. Donating to such NGOs ensures that the donations fulfil their purpose. It is a step towards protecting strays around your locality to ensure their safety.
Humans cannot exist alone. To balance the ecosystem, all creatures should co-exist to form the bubble of life. Just because these animals have nowhere to go, doesn’t mean that they are worthless. As rightly said by Charlie Chaplin, “He who feeds a hungry animal, feeds his own soul.” Saving animals is serving the community. Come forward to give them the care they need and the love they deserve.