[Vol 3/ Issue 2/ March 2018] [ISSN 2394-9295]


B.B.A. LL.B(H)

Email id:


“Creatures don’t expect authorization to live on earth, they were given the privilege to live before we arrived.”

Human rights are those rights that are ensured to each human by the excellence of his being conceived human. Would this be able to definition consolidate certain progressions and be stretched out to natural life as well? The correct question for animals is not ‘Would they be able to reason?’ ‘Would they be able to talk?’, ‘but rather would they be able to endure?’ Throughout history, man has utilized creatures for survival because of which man has needed to persistently assess his moral position on the utilization of nonhuman creatures as sustenance, as research subjects, as the rivalry, as an amusement and as friends.

To protect animals, the mindset of society towards animals needs to be changed. God created nature and all its constituents and components whether biotic or abiotic were equally important and interdependent. However, man out of his selfish motives kept exploiting them for his selfish motives. Due to this continuous act, a notion has been formed that animals are meant to serve mankind and they have no rights. To change this deep-rooted mentality the thinking needs to be changed.

Keywords- Cruelty, Intrinsic worth, Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, Right to life, PETA


As it is realized that individuals utilize creatures for their own cause. “Animals deserve rights, regardless of how they taste or how convenient it is to experiment on them. Like humans, animals are capable of suffering and have an interest in leading their own lives.”[1] When it comes to Suffering to animals the foremost thing which may turn up in our attention is slaughtering and testing on animals. But in fact, slaughtering in accord with the due practice and law[2] is permissible and the heap of animal abuse lies with the other surplus of inhumane and cruel acts toward them. There may not be a perceived or an unequivocal meaning of cruelty to creatures however after the general perusing of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 one may decipher it as any demonstration or disregard which may cause infliction of superfluous pain or be enduring an animal (who is any living creature other than a human being)[3].

Animals additionally have their own rights however they are exempted from their rights. Not solely this however we tend to even not letting them board their natural homes suitably and peacefully because of we are “human beings”, the authoritative one destroying the flora and fauna, therefore, for the fulfillment of our desires, our beauty merchandise that are a lot more necessary than the lives of the helpless animals who can’t show the pain they suffer, the humiliation attributable to the mere egotistical reasons of the human beings.

A portion of the many acts of disregard may incorporate the inability to give the essential medical consideration or nourishment, water or the inability to take any fundamental measure which may put the animal through pointless agony or be enduring. It is also important to remember that animal cruelty is not restricted to cases involving physical harm, causing an animal psychological harm in the form of distress, torment or terror may also constitute animal cruelty.[4] . Animal cruelty may be either deliberate abuse or just the failure to require care or nursing of an animal. it should be known as any human action that infers on any non-human animal suffering, pain or hurt for the item or motive being apart from that of own self-defence or survival. From the nominal to the brutal crimes (such as killing and thereafter cooking of a cat, dog langurs[5], maiming of animals, to rape of animals resulting in their death[6]) all have had and square measure having their presence in our country.


Cruelty to animals is an offence; hence, it is a crime against the humanity, but it is cruel of us and risky for the civility that such crimes generally are overlooked either because of the ignorance among both the lawbreakers and the communal, of the regulations or because of the coldness of them. Therefore, there has been a necessity of a public policy to stop cruelty to animals. For Instance: Over loading of livestock and other animals during carriage, using of animals for the purpose of entertainment, experiments is an offence which is extremely common but it goes generally unnoticed by maximum people as they are unconscious of the protective laws for such offences and its severe consciences for the animals. Offence against animals is in contradiction with the meaning of a justice, civil society and the sense of the right to life given by the Indian constitution under Article 21 and hence, takes us back towards being brute.

If India, where it is the Constitutional mandate of every citizen to “have compassion for living creatures”, began to take cruelty to animal’s cases seriously, there would be one more crucial means by which to address and prevent the horrific crimes against women and children currently plaguing the nation.”[7]. “Anyone who has accustomed himself to regard the life of any living creature as worthless is in danger of arriving also at the idea of worthless human lives, wrote humanitarian Dr Albert Schweitzer. Robert K Ressler, who developed profiles of serial killers for the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), states, ‘Murderers … very often start out by killing and torturing animals as kids’. Studies have now convinced sociologists, lawmakers and the courts that acts of cruelty to animals deserve our attention. Research in psychology and criminology shows that people who commit acts of cruelty to animals don’t stop there; many of them move on to their fellow humans. The FBI has found that a history of cruelty to animals regularly appears in the backgrounds of serial rapists and murderers, and the standard diagnostic and treatment manual for psychiatric and emotional disorders lists cruelty to animals as a diagnostic criterion for conduct disorders.”[8]

1. Examples That Make the Headlines: Notorious Killer[9]

History is replete with serial killers whose violent tendencies were first directed at animals. Albert De Salvo (the “Boston Strangler”), who killed 13 women, trapped dogs and cats and shot arrows at them through boxes in his youth. Serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer impaled frogs, cats, and dogs’ heads on sticks. Dennis Rader (the BTK killer), who terrorized people in Kansas, wrote in a chronological account of his childhood that he hanged a dog and a cat. During the trial of convicted sniper Lee Boyd Malvo, a psychology professor testified that the teenager, who killed 10 people with a rifle, had “pelted—and probably killed—numerous cats with marbles from a slingshot when he was about 14.” The deadly violence that has shattered schools in recent years has, in most cases, begun with cruelty to animals. High-school killers such as Kip Kinkel in Springfield, Oregon, and Luke Woodham, in Pearl, Mississippi, tortured animals before starting their shooting sprees. Columbine High School students Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, who shot and killed 12 classmates before turning their guns on themselves, spoke to their classmates about mutilating animals.

2. ‘The Link’ Next Door: Cruelty to Animals and Family Violence[10]

Sixty percent of more than 50 New Jersey families that had received treatment as a result of incidents of child abuse also had animals in the home who had been abused.

Therefore, it is undoubtedly recognized that there is colossal necessity for a suitable public policy to prevent cruelty to animals and to guarantee animal safety as it is not only ethically essential and is our duty but also it has the possibility of serving our society also.


We should highlight the intrinsic worth of animals that against the thinking of seeing them as mere items of property. And, we should emphasize on their welfare so that they’re able to lead a life at minimum without pain and suffering or in different words so that they are to lead life they truly deserve and not as a object or an item of entertainment.

“In legal terms, intrinsic value implies that animals have interests of their own that must be protected against human actions that are detrimental to the animals’ physical and ethological welfare, or otherwise harmful. The permissibility of actions towards animals shall never be taken for granted. The interests of the animals will have to be balanced against the interests of humans, and the balancing should be extricated from the bias towards human interests that has always been our second nature.”[11] “Animals shall finally be done right as sentient, conscious beings, endowed with positive and negative emotions and interests of their own. These interests can be described in terms of respectful treatment, good welfare, good health, integrity, and – where wild animals are concerned – being left in peace.”[12]

We have to understand and educate other also with the truth that animals are not simply a property and therefore, should also not be perceived as just the similar because “those who insist that animals should not be property might be making a simple and modest claim: A table, a chair, or a stereo can be treated as the owner likes; it can be broken or sold or replaced at the owner’s will. For animals, it might be thought, the status of property is devastating to actual protection against cruelty and abuse.”[13]


India has some of the finest provisions to safeguard animals in world. For example,

  1. It is the fundamental duty of every citizen of India to have compassion for all living creatures. art 51A(g)
  2. To kill or maim any animal, including stray animals, is a punishable offence. IPC Sections 428 and 429.
  3. Abandoning any animal for any reason can land you in prison for up to three months. Section 11(1)(i) and Section 11(1)(j), PCA Act, 1960.
  4. No animal (including chickens) can be slaughtered in any place other than a slaughterhouse. Sick or pregnant animals shall not be slaughtered. Rule 3, of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, (Slaughterhouse) Rules, 2001 and Chapter 4, Food Safety and Standards Regulations, 2011
  5. Stray dogs that have been operated for birth control cannot be captured or relocated by anybody including any authority. ABC Rules, 2001.
  6. Neglecting an animal by denying her sufficient food, water, shelter and exercise or by keeping him chained/confined for long hours is punishable by a fine or imprisonment of up to 3 months or both. Section 11(1)(h), PCA Act, 1960
  7. Monkeys are protected under the Wildlife (Protection)Act, 1972 and cannot be displayed or owned.
  8. Bears, monkeys, tigers, panthers, lions and bulls are prohibited from being trained and used for entertainment purposes, either in circuses or streets. Section 22(ii), PCA Act, 1960.
  9. Animal sacrifice is illegal in every part of the country. Rule 3, Slaughterhouse Rules, 2001.
  10. Organizing of or participating in or inciting any animal fight is a cognizable offence. Section 11(1)(m)(ii) and Section 11(1)(n), PCA Act, 1960.
  11. Cosmetics tested on animals and the import of cosmetics tested on animals is banned. Rules 148-C and 135-B of Drugs & Cosmetics Rules, 1945.
  12. Teasing, feeding or disturbing the animals in a zoo and littering the zoo premises is an offence punishable by a fine of Rs. 25000 or imprisonment of up to three years or both. Section 38J, Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.
  13. Capturing, trapping, poisoning or baiting of any wild animal or even attempting to do so is punishable by law, with a fine of up to Rs. 25000 or imprisonment of up to seven years or both. Section 9, Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.
  14. Disturbing or destroying eggs or nests of birds and reptiles or chopping a tree having nests of such birds and reptiles or even attempting to do so constitutes to hunting and attracts a punishment of a fine of up to Rs. 25000, or imprisonment of up to seven years or both. Section 9, Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.
  15. Conveying or carrying animals whether in or upon any vehicle, in any manner or position which causes discomfort, pain or suffering is a punishable offence under two Central Acts. Section 11(1)(d) Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, (Transport of Animal)


According to us, when it comes to strong laws and regulations for animal welfare or the prevention of cruelty to animals, India is having one of the strongest protective laws in the world which practically include all the areas and characteristics of animal cruelty, the most significantly the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 (PCA Act). The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 which extends to the whole of India except the state of Jammu & Kashmir.[15] This Act swapped the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1890, which at that period had become useless for achieving the intended objectives of animal welfare due to realistic circumstances

The Supreme Court in its current judgment had detected the various defects that the PCA Act, 1890,which it had with itself as a result the PCA Act, 1960, was enacted, “The existing Act(PCA Act, 1890) has restricted scope as: (1)it applies only to urban areas within municipal limits; (2)it defines the term ‘animal’ as meaning any domestic or captured animal and thus contains no provision for prevention of cruelty to animals other than domestic and captured animals; (3)it covers only certain specified types of cruelty to animals; and (4)penalties for certain offences are inadequate.”[16]And in the same decision the succeeding observations were made as respect to the aim of the legislature while passing the PCA Act, 1960, “While enacting the PCA Act, the Parliament has evinced its intention to cover the whole field. To examine the same, we must refer to the Statement of Objects of the Act, Preamble and other relevant statutory provisions, which would indicate that the Parliament wanted a comprehensive act with the object of promoting message of animal welfare and for preventing cruelty to the animals.”[17]

The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 is federal law of India enacted to prevent the infliction of unnecessary pain or suffering on animals and to amend the laws relating to the prevention of cruelty to animals. As per the provisions of the law the government of India formed the Animal Welfare Board of India.[18] It imposes a duty on every person having the care of any animal to take all reasonable measures to ensure its well-being and to prevent the infliction of unnecessary pain or suffering.[19] The term, “animal,” means any living creature other than a human being.[20]

“The Act prohibits any person from inflicting, causing, or if it is the owner, permitting, unnecessary pain or suffering to be inflicted on any animal and criminalizes beating, kicking, torturing, mutilating, administering an injurious substance, or cruelly killing an animal.”[21]

It is also illegal to over-ride, over-drive, over-load, or work an unfit animal.[22] “It is an offense to cruelly transport, confine, chain or tether an animal. It is a violation to engage in animal fighting or shooting competitions in which animals are released from captivity to be shot. An owner commits an offense if he or she fails to provide sufficient food, drink or shelter, unreasonably abandons any animal, or permits any diseased or disabled animal to roam or die in any street. Exemptions include the dehorning of cattle, castration, branding, and noseroping of animals in the prescribed manner, destruction of stray dogs in lethal chambers, the humane slaughter of animals for food or according to religious sacrifice, and the destruction of suffering animals. Experimentation on animals is also exempted, if operations are performed using an anaesthetic that prevents the animal from feeling pain. Violations are punishable with a fine and/or imprisonment (up to 3 months). The court may also confiscate any animal from a person convicted under the Act. The statute of limitations is three months for prosecution.”[23]

Therefore, one possibly will say that the PCA Act, 1960, pacts with the prevention of widely held acts of brutality to animals.


However, exactly while everything is by all accounts extraordinary with this Act I may bring up the one and the most real imperfection with this Act, the Act which is additionally the foundation of most the various animal welfare laws likewise and this is the main deformity which is a noteworthy reason of its incapability.

  1. As per section 12 of the PCA Act, 1960 “If any persons upon any cow or other milch animal the operation called practising phooka or to improve lactation which is injurious to the health of the animal] or permits such operation being performed upon any such animal in his possession or under his control, he shall be punishable with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees, or with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years, or with both, and the animal on which the operation was performed shall be forfeited to the Government[24]
  2. Subsequently moving ahead, the punishments for the acts which contrast with the provision of prevention of cruelty to animal while testing is “prescribed as with fine which may extend to two hundred rupees, and, when the contravention or breach of condition has taken place in any institution the person in-charge of the institution shall be deemed to be guilty of the offence and shall be punishable accordingly.”[25]
  3. While for an offence which contrast with the provision of Section-11, the section which exemplifies the provisions for prevention of cruelty to animal in nearly all cases “is in the case of a first offence, with fine which shall not be less than ten rupees but which may extend to fifty rupees and in the case of a second or subsequent offence committed within three years of the previous offence, with fine which shall not be less than twenty five rupees but which may extend, to one hundred rupees or with imprisonment for a term which may extend, to three months, or with both”.[26]

It is germane to say here that such punishments of fine like ten, fifty, hundred or two hundred are practically proportional to irrelevant in the present situation nor is that of one thousand rupees is that successful. Such an issue has created in light of the reality of numbness of the enactment and political forces for some earlier decades as it is applicable to specify here that this Act was made in 1960 when the estimation of Indian Rupees was very high, hence it had the capability of having a hindrance impact in the general public at any rate around then when it was authorized yet right now such insignificant punishments have turned out to be unimportant and one may forget about it having an impediment impact however a guilty party might not have any issue in going out on a limb of paying such fine. While the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, is having punishments, for example, detainment up to 7 years the PCA Act with respect to this issue is having an extraordinary inclination of earnest consideration towards this amendment in it. Subsequently the very protest of this Act is not being actualized as it is not ready to have that obstacle impact in the public to lessen remorselessness to creatures and to advance creature welfare.


The idea of a constitution emanated from the need of controlling arbitrariness, despotism and highhandedness of the ruler. The ruler needs to commit to welfare of the people which gets reflected in a foundational document of a country. The people designed a framework to allocate limited power to the ruler and inalienable rights for themselves to enjoy protection against every possibility of abuse of power by the government. The framework prescribed a governance model and a set of rights to limit the power of the government. A detailed set of rights are also entrenched in the Constitution of India, 1950 for ensuring autonomy and well-being to citizens and non-citizens.[27]

The rights enumerated under chapter IV are not enforceable in court of law.[28] The rights are so inherent in human’s nature that without which they cannot live as human beings.[29] Different rights scripted under the Constitution enrol chose human rights which are ensured to individuals because of the reality of being. Anthropogenic attributes of the Part III and Part IV of the Constitution bring up an issue on the current judgment of the Supreme Court in Animal Welfare Board v. The Union of India [30]where energized nature of ‘Right to life’ under art 21 has showered advantage on non-human viz., animals.

“Amongst all the fundamental rights, art 21 has influenced the development of landscape of human rights in India, the most. To draw the content of ‘life’ under art 21, the court identifies every basic requirement for guaranteeing dignified life of human being as part of the celebrated provision of the Constitution and made it integral part of the rights framework. A new dimension has been added to the interpretation of ‘right to life and personal liberty’ by introducing ‘negative’ as well as ‘positive’ obligation on the state which covers not only ‘duty to restraint’ but also of ‘duty to facilitate entitlements’. For determining the constituent of the ‘right’, the judiciary has always looked for such facets of ‘life’ which is essential for humane existence in contrast with animal.[31]

We live in a common society or it would be more exact to say that we live in a societal order in which we need to be civil. Be that as it may, such exercises or treatment are taking will be removing us more from such a goal or such a need.

It is our obligation to secure and care for animals not only ethically as well as for all intents and purposes, truth be told, the Constitution of India standings a basic obligation on us to care for every one of the animals and to have empathy towards them. “It shall be the duty of every citizens of India to protect and improve the natural environment including forests, lakes, rivers and wild life, and to have compassion for living creatures.”[32] “The Supreme Court of India has held that by enacting art 51A(g) and giving it the status of a fundamental duty, one of the objects sought to be achieved by Parliament is to ensure that the spirit and message of arts 48 and 48-A are honoured as a fundamental duty of every citizen. art 51A (g), therefore, enjoins that it is a fundamental duty of every citizen “to have compassion for living creatures”, which means concern for suffering, sympathy, kindliness etc.”[33] We are people and in this way, it is pivotal for us to absorb characteristics of humanism in us which includes sympathy for all and to forestall superfluous agony and enduring to any living being, to deal with our condition, our biodiversity and guarantee that they are secured.

The Supreme Court of India while examining the meaning of the term ‘humanism’ in the Constitution of India has held “art 51A (h) of the Constitution of India says that it shall be the duty of every citizen to develop the scientific temper, humanism and the spirit of inquiry and reform. Emphasis has been made to the expression “humanism” which has many meanings, but increasingly designates as an inclusive sensibility for our species. Humanism also means, understand benevolence, compassion, mercy etc. Citizens should, therefore, develop a spirit of compassion and humanism. To look after the welfare and well-being of the animals and the duty to prevent the infliction of pain or suffering on animals highlights the principles of humanism in art 51A (h). Both arts 51A (g) and (h) have to be read into the PCA Act”[34]

The Constitution of India accommodates Fundamental Right of “right to life and personal liberty”. This central right is not really confined just to people but rather it ought to likewise be translated to give the privilege to live to animals moreover. This is a basic right which is a key fundamental component in the essential structure of the constitution and its significance, its power and amazingness is irrefutable. “The Supreme Court has held that every species has a right to life and security, subject to the law of the land, which includes depriving its life, out of human necessity. art 21 of the Constitution, while safeguarding the rights of humans, protects life and the word ‘life’ has been given an expanded definition and any disturbance from the basic environment which includes all forms of life, including animal life, which are necessary for human life, fall within the meaning of art 21 of the Constitution (emphasis supplied). So far as animals are concerned, in our view, ‘life’ means something more than mere survival or existence or instrumental value for human beings, but to lead a life with some intrinsic worth, honour and dignity…Right to dignity and fair treatment is, therefore, not confined to human beings alone, but to animals as well…Animals have also a right against the human beings not to be tortured and against infliction of unnecessary pain or suffering.”[35]


  1. Issues, PETA India, available at (last accessed on July. 29, 2017, 01:38 a.m.),
  2. Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Slaughter House) Rules, 2001
  3. The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 59, P.C.A Act, Section-2, cl.(a) (1960).
  4. 5What is animal cruelty, available at (last accessed on July 29, 2017, 02:08 p.m.)
  5. Naga Police Officers Say They Cooked Cats, Dogs and Langurs At Delhi Police Institute! available at ((last accessed on July 29, 2017, 05:08 p.m.)
  6. Two men tie up cow, rape, stab it, The Times of India, available at (last accessed at July 29, 2017, 05:08 p.m.)
  7. Poorva Joshipuria, Delhi gang rape two years on: Shocking levels of animal abuse show India has failed to change, International Business Times, available at (last accessed on July 29, 2017, 06:52 p.m.),
  8. People Who Are Violent Towards Animals Rarely Stop There, PETA India, available at (last accessed on July 29, 2017, 07:26 p.m.)
  9. Animal Abuse and Human Abuse: Partners in Crime, PETA, Available at (last accessed on July 29, 2017, 07:37 p.m.)
  10. Id
  11. Id
  12. Id
  13. Cass R. Sunstein, The Rights of Animals: A Very Short Primer, John M. Olin Law & Economics Working Paper No. 157, (Second Series), Chicago Working Papers in Law and Economics
  14. TBI BLOGS: 15 Animal Rights in India That Every Citizen Should Know, The Better India, Available at (last accessed on July 29, 2017, 08:45 p.m.)
  15. The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 59, P.C.A Act, Section-1, cl.(2) (1960).
  16. Animal Welfare Board of India v. A. Nagaraja & Ors., CIVIL APPEAL NO. 5387 at *90, (SC May.7, 2014), available at (last accessed on July 29, 2017, 08:25 p.m.)
  17. Id
  18. What is the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, Ambition IAS Hari prasad’s Institute, Available at (last accessed on July 29, 2017, 08:15 p.m.)
  19. supra note 17
  20. supra note 3
  21. supra note 19
  22. The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 59, P.C.A Act, Section-11, cl. (1)(a) (1960).
  23. supra note 19
  24. The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 59, P.C.A Act, Section-12 (1960)
  25. The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 59, P.C.A Act, Section-20 (1960)
  26. The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 59, P.C.A Act, Section-11, cl. (1)(o) (1960).
  27. Uday Shankar, Do Animals Have A Right Under art 21 of the const of India? – Comment on Animal Welfare Board of India Case, Bharti Law Review, Oct. – Dec., (2014), at 65.
  28. const OF INDIA. art. 37.
  29. Keshavananda Bharti v. State of Kerala, A.I.R. 1973 S.C. 1461, Sikri, CJI, observed: “I am unable to hold these provisions to show that rights are not natural or inalienable rights. As a matter of fact, India was a party to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights…. and that Declaration describes some fundamental rights as inalienable.”
  30. Animal Welfare Board of India v. A. Nagaraja, CIVIL APPEAL NO. 5387, (SC May.7, 2014),
  31. supra note 28
  32. The const of India, art 51A, Cl.(g)
  33. State of Gujarat v. Mirzapur Moti Kureshi Kassab Jamat and Others, 8 SCC 534, (SC 2005)
  34. Animal Welfare Board of India v. A. Nagaraja & Ors., CIVIL APPEAL NO. 5387 at *80, (SC May.7, 2014)
  35. supra note 28

Comments are closed.