Fortnightly Commentary No 52: 28th February 2014 circ. 2000 people

Dear Members and Friends,
 
Just back from a train trip. My friend had an ipod with it seemed millions of my favourite old tunes from the 60s, 70s- rock classics, show tunes, jazzy, obscure and even sarcastic cowboy music I remembered from my college era.  I had to turn up the volume to the edge of reason where even the manufacturer has issued an advisory basically saying "don’t do this." 
 
So transported in time and space, I cared not at all that I was surrounded by inward business-y looking gentlemen in the A/C chair car, and when I found myself bouncing around like popcorn in an air-popping machine, the real test of emersion was this: I didn’t care! Let ‘em look! I was boogying in the bogey. 
 
For the people facing animal suffering with courage and energy, it’s especially important to play sometimes, just for the heck of it, just for the sake of "why not" and no matter how old you are.  One of the best songs ever written goes: "Forget your troubles, come on get happy!"
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India for Animals – India's largest conference for animal protection – will be held in Jaipur, September 12-14, 2014. Mark your Calendars!
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Fruits of Collaboration…
Prashanth writes: KFAPO and PFA Trivandrum successfully developed outreach material for reaching out to school children about prevention of dog bites and being responsible pet owners. The first leg of outreach took place in three schools this week with more than 200 pupils in attendance. Pictures and details of the events here- https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=oa.251401935030847&type=1. Meanwhile, Jaipur becomes the first collective in the country with dedicated legal support. PFAPO member Sushma Date also shared an update and presentation to persuade residents to take up sterilization of street dogs in the city by Deccan Gymkana Parisar Samiti. Download the presentation here- http://www.fiapo.org/downloads/PuneDGPSStrayDogProgram.pdf 
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Hariharan concert in Pune at Ganesh Kala Krida Kendra in Swargate from 7 pm  tonight. A percentage money from sales of tickets will be donated to animal welfare causes in Pune. For more info, contact  Darshana  9860074232   darshan561@yahoo.com
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The global wave of appreciation post our landmark victory last year in banning the establishment of dolphinaria and the keeping of cetaceans in captivity in India continues. Last week, we were interviewed by the Minnesota public radio for their show ‘A Beautiful World’ to showcase our efforts in saving this extraordinary animal from captivity in India. http://www.fiapo.org/view_news.php?viewid=13111
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India in the Lead for Compassion Education
Children are taking a step away from animal cruelty now that the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has issued an advisory to 18000 schools asking them to stop wearing leather shoes. The Economic Times especially credits PETA-India and MP Maneka Gandhi for campaigning to ban leather from school uniforms. The pressure from activists has even led the CBSE to refer to "factory farms and slaughterhouses" in its advisory—representing a powerful step forward in the consciousness of government officials. Well done to the activists behind this; and congratulations to the CBSE for teaching young people to value animals and other lives on earth. http://fiapo.org/view_news.php?viewid=13108
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Living Free…
Bikramadittya writes: Living Free is the name of the programme dedicated to changing consumer choices so that trends toward meat eating are reversed and plant-based diet advantages for animals, environment and human health convince those who learn about them. The distribution of written information in the form of leaflets, hand-to-hand and at stalls and other presentations, has been conducted throughout the year in order to measure the impact different methods have on the recipients of information. What form they get it in, who gets the information, where—these all may influence the number of people who give FIAPO feedback in the form of emails and phone calls requesting more information and involvement. These “impacts” are now being measured as the pilot one-year programme comes to its conclusion in Kolkata. We look forward to sharing results soon.
 
Bikramadittya Roy, FIAPO's kind-hearted, enthusiastic world-changer who devoted the past year to saving animals through veg outreach, is concluding his FIAPO work this month. We thank Bikram for the wonderful work he has done for animals and look forward to his continued friendship to our FIAPO family of animal protectors – and animals – who will keep benefiting from his accumulated wisdom.
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On behalf of our members, we regularly take action against the growing trend of poultry factory farming in India through outreach actions to reveal the truth about the suffering experienced by crores of animals in this industry. See FIAPO takes action after disease outbreak in Poultry Farms (http://www.fiapo.org/view_news.php?viewid=13085 ) and Animal Rights Campaigners Highlight Welfare Issues in Indian Egg Industry (http://www.fiapo.org/view_news.php?viewid=13083) and FIAPO urges Punjab CM to reconsider expansion of Poultry farms in the state (http://www.fiapo.org/view_news.php?viewid=13098)  and FIAPO responds to projected growth of the Poultry industry (http://www.fiapo.org/view_news.php?viewid=13115)
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Holy Cow…
Shweta writes: The petitions committee recently decided to review the meat export policy. The favourable result can be a huge victory in our stride and only goes to show the value of research in all fields.  The process for research can be as simple or complicated as the situation demands. In this case, putting forward powerful valid arguments backed by facts from international and Indian research papers helped us unveil the practices of meat export and slaughter. The committee has has recommended that the national meat export policy be reviewed within the next 3 months. See http://www.fiapo.org/view_news.php?viewid=13101
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Brighter Green has published another excellent resource- Beyond the Pail: The Emergence of Industrialized Dairy Systems in Asia, explores the trend towards increased dairy consumption and production in a number of Asian countries and seeks to demonstrate that the expansion of industrial operations into these countries results in severe consequences for the environment, public health, rural economies, and animal welfare.
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Enshrined or Exploited? Camels at the crossroads.
Camels may be accorded "heritage status" by the Rajasthan government, according to the Times of India. This may be good for camels if it heightens vigilance among law-enforcement agencies to stop the illegal trafficking and killing of camels. It may be bad for camels if the Agriculture and Animal Husbandry ministry uses the heritage status to promote breeding and exploiting camels. If camels are valued only as "ships of the desert" and denied opportunities to spend even small portions of their days out of the harness; if they are never allowed to wander naturally but are bred only for work and camel coats, then increasing the number of camels will just bring more untimely death for the non-productive members of the herds. Who among the noble farmers will feed the aged camels who have served faithfully? Who has facilities for retired camels such as are provided for cows? http://fiapo.org/view_news.php?viewid=13107  
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We were recently asked to take action against Jallikattu in Tamil Nadu by urging the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister to ensure compliance with the directive of the Supreme Court in ensuring that no harm comes to the bulls. We also strongly advocated for the complete ban of this cruel sport in the state. http://www.fiapo.org/view_news.php?viewid=13110
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Definitely Dogs...
Sudhersena writes: Recently in Chennai, Alan a 24-year-old student died of rabies after being bitten by a pup which had strayed into the college campus. This reinforces how important it is to take post-bite treatment. http://www.fiapo.org/view_news.php?viewid=13112  FIAPO has compiled valuable resources on dog welfare – here, you will find information on how to avoid dog bites, what treatment to seek if bitten by a dog, how to care for dogs, how to implement an effective animal birth control programme and a host of other pertinent information. http://fiapo.org/view_news.php?viewid=13097   
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Infocus: Lets Live Together
Since getting a hundred dogs adopted in just their first year, there has been no looking back for Let's Live Together. This Bangalore based organisation brings both method and style into finding caring homes to loving street animals. Partnering with other organisations, they have initiated 'street clinics' and 'community dog spay and neuter drives', which have become flagship events of the organisation. Read on for more
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I have a friend in America who can’t stand a woman she works with–an annoying, badgering, loud-mouthed, know-it-all grump. So disgruntled was my friend, she enrolled for some sessions with a counsellor (don’t ask me what she spent on it: I cried!) After doling out thousands of dollars unburdening herself to her paid listener, she did get some good advice which I share with you now absolutely free of charge: Do what you love, focus on what you love. Stop thinking about your enemy and break the spell he or she has over you by directing all your heart and enthusiasm on your own positive dreams. If conflict ever helps you thrive in your animal protection, by all means engage in the righteous battles. But if it an individual is draining you of energy, run for shelter in the realm of positivity and love which is fuelling you for those who need you now: the animals.
 
Help animals in your own way; remember – no action is too small.
 
Best wishes,
 
Erika Abrams
 
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