AWBI targets Andhra Pradesh on cockfights
Deccan Chronicle | DC Correspondent
Representatives of people among major wrong-doers.
The state government, having given an undertaking not to allow any cockfights, miserably failed to stop the events.
Rajahmundry: Animal Welfare Board of India will file a contempt of court petition in Hyderabad High Court against the state government for failing to control conduct of cockfights during Sankranti festival in the state.
The Hyderabad High Court had given a directive not to allow holding of cockfights even in the traditional format anywhere in the state not only during the Sankranti festival but also at any other times for the reason that the sport subjects the birds to cruelty. Despite this, the state government, having given an undertaking not to allow any cockfights, miserably failed to stop the events.
The organisers of the sport pitched up huge tents in fields, employed private security forces and conducted the cockfights. They even used knives and indulged in betting in several parts in the state, especially in Godavari districts.
The police remained mute spectators except for booking a few cases against the organisers and binding some persons.
The local public representatives played crucial role by inaugurating such fights. Some of them even took part in organising the cockfights. Video clippings and photographs of conducting cockfights, betting, gambling and other illegal activities went viral in social media during the three days of the festival.
Reacting sharply to the failure of the state government and the police to control conduct of cockfights, the Animal Welfare Board of India, armed with all the evidence in the form of video footage, photographs and media coverage, is planning to file a contempt petition in the Hyderabad High Court.
The AWBI is also writing letters to the Speaker of Lok Sabha and to the Speaker of AP Assembly informing them about the behaviour of the members of Parliament and members of Legislative Assembly.
They are seeking action against the representatives. The board is also writing a letter to the Election Commission informing it about how the law-makers violated the directives of both the High Court and the Supreme Court on conduct of cockfights. A letter to the BJP national president, Amit Shah, will also be sent explaining about the role of party MPs and MLAs involved in cockfights seeking action against them.
AWBI member N.G. Jayasimha said, "The state government has grossly failed to control conduct of cockfights. Though the district Collectors and SPs were given clear directions not to allow such fights and inspection teams were formed to keep check on them, they all failed to control them. We will file a contempt petition in the court seeking action."