Thirteen national andregionalanimal protection organisations have called upon RajyaSabha MPs ahead of the winter session in Parliament to seek their cooperation in removing the special exception created in the Wild Life (Protection) Amendment Bill 2022 (WLPA), which allows the transfer of ownership of elephants for “religious and any other purpose.”
The joint letter was issued to all Members of RajyaSabha including those from Tamil Nadu. The representation has been made by the Centre for Research on Animal Rights (CRAR), Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre (WRRC), Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organisations (FIAPO), Cape Foundation, Elsa Foundation, Youth for Animals, People for Animals Goa, Peta India, Walking Eye Foundation for Animal Advocacy, World Animal Protection, Heritage Animal Task Force, Sage Foundation, and Kaziranga Wildlife Society.
Wildlife and environment
The amendment is largely designed in line with the spirit of the WLPA to end illegal trade in wild animals.But it includes a provision that will have the opposite effect. That proviso is the proposed amendment to section 43 to create an exception for the transfer of ownership of privately held elephants, “for religious or any other purpose”.
“Creating such an exception for the transfer of ownership of elephants could open the doors to the capture and hunting of elephants from the wild. This is a regressive step,” says CRAR founder, elephant rights activist and lawyer, AlokHisarwala.