Animal Matters, No 14: 28th September, 2012

Dear Members and Friends,

“Mainstreaming” means identifying and joining the causes and concerns of others, looking for our common values, and adding our masala to theirs so that good deeds multiply.

For animal protectors, an extraordinary mainstreaming opportunity has come about as a result of Shri D.R. Mehta coming on board as an “Ambassador for India’s animals”. Shri D.R. Mehta is the founder of the world-famous Jaipur Foot—the largest organization for the handicapped on the planet.

FIAPO’s operations from Jaipur will function out of the Jaipur foot campus. All the energy that concentrates on the premises is now ours: to enlarge and to encompass the credo of all animal activism: take action to help animals.

No more clucking and shaking our heads as if to say “what a shame,” and doing nothing.

Just as those responsible for having mobilized over a million people by providing artificial limbs knew that saying “such a pity” wasn’t enough, so too do animal protectors know it, and Mehta Sahib is giving us the opportunity to bring animal activism to the ahimsa library in one of India’s leading centers for justice—not charity—to help the downtrodden live with freedom and dignity.

FIAPO is mainstreaming!
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India for Animals: Last few places for IFA left, and don’t forget to send your Dragon’s Den form in – competition is already stiff! India for Animals is all about sharing, learning and inspiring. And this year, you can start that process before you get to the conference. We have created an online forum – very easy to use – so please introduce yourselves and put up ideas you want to discuss during the conference with like-minded folk on it. We will leave some space for such sessions so you can make the conference what you want it to be! See www.fiapo.org/main_forum.php

Exciting news on the programme – we will be joined by the Born Free Foundation – that has done pioneering work on helping animals in zoos and other forms of captivity, for a session on helping animals in zoos. Make sure you have booked a place for yourself at the conference. There are lots of such learning opportunities in store.
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Holy Cow: Our campaign against the planned IFFCO factory farm dairy in Andhra Pradesh continues in collaboration with our member organisation Blue Cross of Hyderabad. A delegation met the new principal secretary of the Government of Andhra Pradesh’s Department of Animal Husbandry and appraised him of our concerns with the IFFCO proposal in particular and factory farms in general. The delegation emphasised the need for the state to reject such a model. We remain optimistic that the state will consider enacting regulations for commercial large cattle facilities.  
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Living Free: In October we launch our network for outreach to reduce animal consumption in India. To kick-start, we are organising coordinated leafleting and outreach activities all over the country. We are visiting Hyderabad, Chennai, Auroville, Bangalore, Mysore, Ooti and Kolam in October. If you are in one of these cities, have you signed up yet? Email varda@fiapo.org for details on when we are in your city.
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Fruits of Collaboration…
Manish writes: Great news from the local federation in Jaipur -thanks to the kindness of Prakrit Bharti Academy, we now have a place which is shared by all 10 JFAPO members, and venue space for larger events. I am writing this sitting next to a volunteer from another member organisation, running a snake helpline. Another one of us is working for companion animals. Its incredible to be able to share our isolated work with each other. At the last meeting, we were discussing possibilities that this ‘hub’ of animal protection in Jaipur holds. Very exciting times. You can expect a lot of activity updates in the coming newsletters.
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We Care Srinagar: The latest We Care Srinagar article brings about a gentle yet striking realization –  the fact that our opinions and our thoughts are actually, heavily influenced by the society we are subject to in our childhood. We are told that street dogs are dirty and dangerous but a single experience could change your mind – if only you gave them a chance. Read on to hear Subhram Chakraborty's simple, yet life-changing experience here http://fiapo.org/view_news.php?viewid=12105
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Knowledge Exchange: Last couple of weeks, we helped activists in Jammu and Bhopal engage with their respective municipal corporations to start a formal ABC. We helped connect up volunteers to organisations in Faridabad and also provided support to a shelter in Dharamsala. Such small, but significant actions remind us daily of why FIAPO started. A network of activists helping and learning from each other – for the animals. If you have a question, email manish@fiapo.org  
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Representing animals at the Petroleum Ministry: Serving animals requires large amounts of fuel – rescue vehicles, ambulances, generators, cooking food, heating water, sterilizing medical equipment – all depend on fuel. The recent increase in rates of diesel and of LP gas has put greater pressure on our limited resources. FIAPO has sent an appeal on behalf of the entire animal community to the minister Shri S Jaipal Reddy for relief. We will keep you posted on this.
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Speaking up for cats in Mumbai: Another case of inhumane killing to fulfil greed. This time in the Kalina area of Mumbai, where an animal activist Mrs. Shanana Sheikh reported three suspicious men – she managed to scare them off but not before they killed a cat. We have written to the senior police inspector of the area to take this as an early warning about people who may turn their violence upon people as well. http://fiapo.org/view_news.php?viewid=12113
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Animal Metaphors: Wolves are not evil – as depicted by Mr. Aseem Trivedi in his cartoon. Not talking about politics or corruption, we have written an open letter to Aseem ji for defaming “wolves” as evil and cunning. They do not enter our territories unless we destroy theirs and they are simply sentient living beings who hunt to eat and feed their cubs. FIAPO speaks up for animals, especially when they are used as metaphors to depict negativity. http://fiapo.org/view_art.php?viewid=12111
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In focus: Just Be Friendly (JBF) India
JBF (India) Trust was established in the year 2003 to provide veterinary care to animals. After four years of successful service in Delhi, JBF (India) Trust expanded its work to Guwahati, Assam in the year 2007. This has been much needed as north east India is in the rain shadow as far as animal welfare is concerned. Read more about the fantastic work of this group herehttp://fiapo.org/view_art.php?viewid=12116

We will be back with more news for you in another fortnight. In the meanwhile, please continue to help animals in your own way; remember – no action is too small.

Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organisations
118, Mahabhadrakali Apt, Plot no: 6, Sector 13, Dwarka, New Delhi – 110075.
www.fiapo.org

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