Animal Cruelty Current Affairs

President approves ordinance allowing Kambala in Karnataka

President Pranab Mukherjee has approved the promulgation of The Prevention of cruelty to Animals (Karnataka Amendment) Ordinance, 2017 by the Governor of Karnataka in pursuance of Article 213 of Constitution.

The promulgated ordinance legalises Kambala, bullock cart races and bull runs as traditional sports involving animals and exempt them from The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960.

Background

In November 2016, the Karnataka High Court had banned the kambala along with bull-cart race in the state while hearing a case filed by the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) citing animal cruelty. The high court had stayed these traditional sports in view of the Supreme Court’s ban on jallikattu, a traditional bull taming sport of Tamil Nadu.

Following protests by people and kambala organisers, Karnataka Assembly had passed an ordinance Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Karnataka Amendment) Bill, 2017 in February 2017 to allow Kambala. In April 2017, the Union Home Ministry asked the state government to modify the Bill (ordinance). The state government made the modifications and sent it back to the union government. Earlier in June 2017, the Union Ministry of Law and Justice had cleared the modified bill (ordinance).

About Kambala

Kambala is the traditional slush track buffalo race that is held annually in coastal districts of Karnataka to entertain rural people of the area. Slushy/marshy paddy field track is used for Kambala. The sports season generally starts in November and lasts till March. The contest generally takes place between two pairs of buffaloes, each pair race in two seprate wet rice fields tracks, controlled by a whip-lashing farmer.

In the traditional form of Kambala, buffalo racing was non-competitive and buffalo pairs ran one by one in paddy fields. Besides, there was also ritualistic approach as some agriculturists race their buffaloes as a means to thank the god for protecting their animals from disease. But in recent times, Kambala has become an organised rural sport.

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Gujarat Assembly passes Gujarat Animal Preservation (Amendment) Bill, 2017

Gujarat Assembly has passed the Gujarat Animal Preservation (Amendment) Bill, 2017 to amend Gujarat Animal Preservation Act, 1954.

The amendment bill makes the existing law stricter and provides for harsher punishment and higher penalties to prevent cow slaughter in the state.

Key Facts
  • This bill has more stringent provision against the cow slaughtering and cow transportation for slaughtering. It allows cow Gujarat Cowtransportation only with permit issued by Government authority.
  • Only 7 officials are notified for issuance of permit contrary to 25 earlier. It does not allow transportation of cows during night hours. It also makes slaughtering of cow cognizable and non-bailable offence.
  • It also raises the minimum jail term for illegal ferrying of cows for slaughter from 7 to 10 years against the current provision of 3 to 7 years. It also increases the monetary penalty from Rs 50,000 to Rs 1 lakh.
  • Vehicle used for illegal cow transportation will be seized permanently by the Government. Earlier the government used to confiscate such vehicles only for six months.
Background

Gujarat Government had enacted the Gujarat Animal Preservation Act-1954 as per Article 48 of Constitution for the preservation of milch animals, and for cattle that are suitable for breeding or agricultural purposes. It was amended in 2011 for better implementation of the Act.

COw Slaugher

States marked red do not allow slaughter of cows.

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