PETA slams Stalin's 'anti-national' remark

New Delhi, Jan 16 (IANS) After DMK's Working President M.K. Stalin dubbed PETA as "anti-national" for its criticism of Jallikattu, the animal welfare organisation hit back, saying to stand for kindness is patriotic and to stand for cruelty is "un-Indian".

PETA (People for Ethical Treatment of Animals) is a party in the petition against Tamil Nadu's bull taming sport Jallikattu, which was banned by the Supreme Court recently.

"PETA, India for past 17 years had served the animals of this country based on the law, to call PETA an anti-national is cheap," Manilal Valliyate, Director of Veterinary Affairs, PETA India told IANS. 

PETA India in a statement also said that the Indian constitution calls for compassion for animals, adding, "to stand for kindness is patriotic, to stand for cruelty is un-Indian."

"Article 51A(g) of the Constitution of India makes it the mandate of every Indian citizen to have compassion for animals," PETA said.

Valliyate, who has personally witnessed Jallikattu events, said that the sport causes unnecessary pain to the people for amusement, which is against the law.

He added that animals like bulls do not become aggressive unless instigated, and in Jallikattu bulls are often poked or hurt to get them agitated.

According to PETA's fact sheet, since 2008, 43 people and at least 11 animals had died in Jallikattu, while over 5,000 people were injured.

Earlier in the day, Stalin, Leader of Opposition in the Tamil Nadu Assembly, said the central government should ban non-governmental organisations (NGO) like PETA that function against Indian culture, tradition and also "as anti-national".