Keywords– Bombay High Court, Emotions, Animals
“Justice Sanap emphasizes compassionate handling of animal cruelty cases, acknowledging their inability to voice their rights.”
The Nagpur Bench of the Bombay High Court, with a single judge bench of Justice GA Sanap, recently recognized that animals have emotions and feelings similar to human beings. While hearing a plea regarding the custody of 39 bovines intercepted and seized for illegal transportation under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, the judge emphasized the need for sensitivity in dealing with cases of animal cruelty. The judge observed that although animals cannot speak and assert their rights, their welfare and protection must be ensured by the concerned authorities in accordance with the law. The court refused to grant custody of the animals to the petitioners and instead directed a registered gaushala (cow shelter) to take over their custody until the matter is finally adjudicated.
The court noted various violations, including the transportation of the animals beyond the vehicle capacity and the lack of proper arrangements for fodder and water, leading to the cruel conditions in which the animals were transported. The judge relied on a Supreme Court order that discourages handing over custody of animals to their owners in cruelty cases.
The court further directed the concerned police station officer, along with a veterinary officer, to visit the gaushala twice a month and submit reports to the magistrate. The plea for custody was rejected, highlighting the importance of compassion and sensitivity in addressing cases of animal cruelty.
Written by- Anjali Sudha, College name – Haridev law college, Kashipur., Semester- 6th sem an intern under Legal Vidhiya