Body-painted activists with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) visited the Byculla Zoo in Mumbai, India today.
“Bodypainted in an array of bright colours and holding a banner that reads, ‘Let Animals Show Their True Colours: Boycott Zoos’, members of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India will gather outside Byculla Zoo in Mumbai, in advance of Holi,” PETA wrote in a statement before the protest.
In general, the protest is against zoos, where animals are kept in cages for humans to gawk at.
“PETA is asking the residents of Mumbai to let animals show their true colours by boycotting zoos. We are also asking India as a whole to make every effort to help these suffering animals enjoy their natural habitats instead of being locked up in cages,” PETA India Chief Functionary Poorva Joshipura said.
Deepti Rajan of Real Time News, India notes that such colorful activism is not typical of India. “Indian NGOs usually adopt low profile and peaceful ways of protests, such as holding dharnas and agitations, to push home their points while western activists can get very colourful in their advocacy.”
More from PETA India on the reason for its latest action:
Hundreds of thousands of animals languish in zoos around the world. Animals in zoos are denied everything that is natural and important to them, including the opportunity to fly, swim, select partners and socialise. They often express their frustration and loneliness through obsessive, repetitive and even self-destructive behaviour. No zoo can come close to offering the space, environmental enrichment, ecological diversity and complex habitats that animals need to thrive. PETA’s investigations of zoos across India have revealed horrific conditions, including deficiencies in food, drinking water, housing, veterinary care and environmental enrichment.
Image: Elephants at Byculla Zoo via Elroy Serrao (CC BY-SA 2.0 license)