May 7, 2012
Mouse Urges India’s Minister To Prohibit Cosmetics Testing on Animals
A “mouse” travelled to Delhi on May 3 with a very important message for the Ministry of Environment and Forests: “Ban cosmetic testing on animals.” As part of a delegation of Indian animal protection organisations, supported by Humane Society International, the mouse delivered her message to Minister Jayanthi Natarajan and presented her with a hamper of cruelty-free cosmetics.
The delegation sincerely thanked Minister Natarajan for India’s recent prohibition of animal experiments from science education and training, which will spare the lives of many thousands of animals in India’s universities, schools and research institutes. They warmly welcomed the ban as a significant move in the right direction for humane, modern scientific research and requested that the same prohibition be introduced to end the use of animals to test cosmetics products and ingredients in India.
The Ministry of Environment and Forests has mandated the use of non-animal methods in place of dissections and live animal experiments for biomedical education and research—with the exception of new molecular research—making India the first country in the world to effectively ban the use of live animals in education. The prohibition was introduced on both ethical and scientific grounds, making clear that sufficient advanced non-animal methods existed to make a ban on animal use both possible and necessary.
The delegation, made up of members of the Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organisations (FIAPO), told the minister that the same ethical and scientific imperative existed to ban live animal experiments for cosmetics and that such a ban would be in line with the Three Rs (Replacement, Reduction, Refinement) Policy adopted in India.
Indian law does not specifically require animal testing for cosmetics that contain ingredients generally accepted to be safe according to agreed-upon standards. Nonetheless, such animal testing continues to take place in India’s laboratories and involves invasive and painful tests on animals such as rabbits, guinea pigs and mice. In April, HSI offices around the world and the Humane Society of the United States launched Be Cruelty-Free, a campaign to end animal testing of cosmetics worldwide.
HSI believes that India is well-placed to demonstrate to the rest of the world its compassion for animals and dedication to cutting-edge science by introducing a ban on cosmetics testing on animals. Join us—Be Cruelty-Free!