Animals for theatricality- always a bad idea.
The Election Commission of India, established under the Indian Constitution in the year 1950, and vested with the power to superintend and control the conduct of elections to Parliament and the Legislature of every State, has issued a strong advisory to all recognized national and state political parties, against the use of animals in election campaigns and processes. The Commission has advised both, political parties and candidates, to refrain from using animals in election campaigns. The Commission has also stated that if at all the use of animals is unavoidable for any particular reason, it is incumbent upon them to ensure that no violation of animal protection laws takes place.
The Election Commission was acting on representations alleging that animals such as horses, ponies, donkeys, elephants, camels and bulls were subjected to cruelty during election campaigns.
What is also of particular relevance is the fact that the Commission has specifically advised recognized political parties with animals or birds as electoral symbols, to ensure that no cruelty is shown to any such animal or bird. Further, that no live demonstration of that animal or bird is resorted to, in any election campaign, whether or the Party’s or of any candidate’s.
Political parties have to be registered with the Election Commission, and are granted recognition at the State and National levels by the Election Commission on the basis of their poll performance at general elections according to criteria prescribed by it.The Advisory issued by the Commission can be seen here locally on ‘The Voice of Stray Dogs’. This Advisory is featured on the official website of the Election Commission,