JIPMER gets govt showcause over illegal experiments on animals
Puducherry, July 12 (IANS) The Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education & Research (JIPMER), Puducherry, has come under fire for alleged cruel and illegal experimentation on animals.
The Committee for the Purpose of Control and Supervision of Experiments on Animals (CPCSEA) has sent a show cause notice to JIPMER's director, demanding that the experiments be stopped immediately failing which legal action would be initiated against it.
CPCSEA's move follows a complaint from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India, which was submitted with evidence of the violation of animal protection laws. The CPCSEA is a statutory body formed by the Act of the Indian Parliament under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1960.
In its complaint, PETA India submitted evidence of cruelty and illegality by JIPMER through photographs, the Institutional Animal Ethics Committee (IAEC) circulars inviting research proposals using animals, minutes of IAEC meetings during which illegal animal experiments were approved, memorandums releasing research grants to support proposals involving animal experiments, and published research papers that discuss experiments conducted on animals by the institute during the past 10 years.
The animals rights organisation took up the matter on being alerted by a concerned student.
As per the student complaint received by PETA India, rats and mice were kept in miserable conditions - confined to severely crowded boxes and forced to eat food contaminated with fungus - in violation of CPCSEA regulations and guidelines. Furthermore, the animals were reportedly bred to overpopulation, and students were forced to perform experiments on them solely to reduce their numbers.
"Compassionate students across India have the power to hold their institutes accountable for breaking the law and tormenting animals in experiments," said PETA India Science Policy Advisor Dr Ankita Pandey.
CPCSEA's show cause notice dated July 06 also directs JIPMER to furnish details on the animals housed in the animal facility, details of experiments conducted on animals during the past 10 years, and the minutes of meetings of the IAEC, which approved the experiments on animals.
"We applaud CPCSEA for taking action against JIPMER for conducting unauthorised animal experiments, and we appeal to all medical colleges in the country to replace the use of animals for dissection, training, and other experimentation with humane and superior, non-animal methods now," Dr Pandey stated.