Legalized Captivity; A Study of the Impact of Captivity on Animals and the Responsibility of The State to Ensure Their Wellbeing
Keywords:Animal Rights, Animal Welfare, Animal Abuse, Animal Cruelty, Pakistan Zoo, Zoo Laws, Wildlife Confinement, Zoo Animals
This research paper examines the condition of zoo animals in Pakistan and the role of the state in the protection of these animals in captivity. Zoo animals are often subjected to deplorable conditions and negligence by the zoo administration. Most zoos in Pakistan are funds deficit which leads to a lack of proper living spaces and food. The animals are cramped up in small cement cages without adequate water supply and cleanliness, in weather they might not be accustomed to. There is little to no training for zoo keepers. The realization of the sentience of animals is culturally absent which is then reflected in the ill-treatment of animals in zoos. The paper examines the high profile cases of animal cruelty like those of Kaavan and Noor Jehan, the public response to them, and subsequent debate regarding the existence of zoos and the state’s failure to legislate for the well-being of these animals. The only piece of legislation that exists is the colonial era “Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1890” and a landmark judgment passed by Islamabad High Court Chief Justice Minallah. The paper also makes recommendations regarding the treatment of exotic animals and the responsibility of the state, legislature, and society.
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