Children’s zoo under fire for violating animal rights | Chennai News

CHENNAI: The Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) led the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau and the State Animal Breeding and Department of Veterinary Services to investigate Junglii, an “exotic caress zone”, located in Injambakkam, East Coast Road.
The order comes after a complaint was filed against the petting zoo for allegedly housing exotic animals such as ball pythons, pygmy goats and iguanas inside a building in unfit conditions and charged a varying range of fees to visitors for touching, petting and playing with them.
In the order, sent to departments on July 1, the AWBI cites the complaint of an animal rights activist Anthony Rubinwho claims to have paid `3,097 for three visitors and a mobile camera to enter the centre.
Chennai Wildlife Warden Prasanth E, who carried out an inspection of Junglii with his team following the order, said the center does not house any category of animals covered by India’s 1972 Wildlife Act. wildlife protection. This poses a challenge for any legal action to be initiated.
“Currently, there is no law governing the sale or maintenance of exotic animals in India. While the importation of exotic animals is regulated by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade, the illegal trade in animals company remains a gray area,” he explains.
But what Junglii – opened four months ago – explicitly violates animal registration rules of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act (PCA), 2001, by charging visitors between 399 and 9,999, for handle and play with animals, when operating as a registered center under the Pet Shop Rules 2018.
“When I visited the place, I found reptiles, hedgehogs and other animals under enormous stress from being constantly handled by people. Their enclosures were cramped and significantly removed from their habitats, which which is detrimental to their health and well-being,” says Antony.
Vijay AR, a consultant at Junglii, explains that the fee is for personal consultations on the needs and care of the animals before they are purchased. Their website, however, offers packages for spending time with animals and petting them. The State Animal Husbandry Board coordinator said a team would travel to the Junglii and conduct an investigation on Wednesday.


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