In man’s world, some humans take on brute behaviour in their interaction with animals. From neglect and abandonment to maiming, beating, kicking, running over with vehicles, overloading, torture, bestiality and killing, one wonders who is the real animal? Man or beasts…
According to a 2020 report, filed by the Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organisations, of the 2,400+ registered cases of cruelty against animals, every second case was one of the brutal acts of violence.
Under Section 320 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, if one were found guilty of causing grievous hurt to another human being, the perpetrator on conviction could face imprisonment up to 10 years. However, for a similar offence against an animal, you get away with a fine of Rs 750. Most perpetrators of cruelty against animals are fined just Rs 50.
The law responsible for this is the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PCA) Act, 1960. The acts of cruelty against animals under this law is not punishable strictly and in turn, humans take on unjust acts towards their co-inhabitants on Earth.
For years now, animal rights activists have been calling for stricter punishments for acts of cruelty against animals and amending the PCA Act. The system relies on the 1960 Act, which replaced the colonial one enacted in 1890 but retained the fines and punishment that are ludicrous in current times. The need to make changes to the act is necessary at the time when the violence against animals is increasing.
Article 21 of the Constitution protects the Right to Life and the Supreme Court has held that it does not pertain only to human life. Even after the Apex court ruling, the fine remains outdated and animals continue to suffer beastly nightmares unleashed by man.