Advocate Sankalp Golatkar has filed a PIL before the Supreme Court seeking amendment in the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960, in order to include stringent punishments for perpetrators of animal cruelty.
The petitioner, while contending, drew the court’s attention towards the observations made in Animal Welfare Board of India v. A. Nagaraja & Ors. (2014) 7 SCC 547, whereby it was opined that penalties prescribed in the PCA Act are “inadequate” and the Parliament is “expected” to make proper amendments and provide an “effective deterrent”.
He prayed that offences under Sections 428 and 429 of IPC should be made applicable to all the animals, irrespective of their “value”. Further, it was sought that the impugned Act be amended by taking into consideration the Draft Animal Welfare Act of 2011, the Animal Welfare Bill, 2014 and the Private Member Bill, 2016.
The petitioner contended that the root cause of the exponential rise in animal cruelty cases is the “infinitesimal penalty” imposed on the perpetrators under the Act, wherein they get away by paying a fine of just Rs. 50 and with no imprisonment.