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August 25, 2016

India’s first national level moot court competition on animal laws to be held in Patiala

Students from top Indian law colleges to participate; Supreme Court judges to preside

Humane Society International/India

  • Street dog on bench, Shreya Paropkari/HSI

Students from more than 40 law colleges across India will participate in India’s first National Animal Law Moot Court Competition at the Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law (RGNUL), Patiala. The three-day competition, scheduled for 26 to 28 August, 2016, will help create greater understanding of animal laws amongst the law student community in India.

Humane Society International/India has partnered with The Jurists, an elite panel of eminent academicians, lawyers, law makers, bureaucrats, judges and people who have achieved extraordinary excellence in the field of law, to organize the event. Hon’ble Justice Dipak Mishra, senior judge from the Supreme Court of India, will inaugurate the competition. Various senior judges and lawyers will adjudicate it. Hon’ble Justice Anil R. Dave of the Supreme Court of India will preside the closing ceremony.

In the light of increasing incidence of animal cruelty cases in the country, the competition has been designed to develop an understanding of animal protection issues among students of law. The competition is aimed at exposing these students to the subtleties of animal laws in India - an otherwise ignored subset of legal studies. Competing teams, comprising of three students from each participating college, will work on a moot problem that has been developed by faculty of Patiala Law University in consultation with The Jurists, senior advocates, judges and HSI/India.

Shreya Paropkari, cruelty response manager, HSI/India said, “India has very poor conviction rates in animal cruelty offences. While attitudes towards animal welfare are slowly changing in India, we need talented, young lawyers to fight to ensure all animals live a life of compassion and dignity. I hope that programs such as this moot court will encourage and motivate law students to use their knowledge in furthering the cause of animals in courtrooms across the nation.”

Siddharth Nayak, managing director of The Jurists said, “We are happy to finally provide a platform to the cause within the mainstream law education curriculum. This has been in the pipeline since a year and we are grateful to Humane Society International/India for the event. It’s necessary that students are provided with such opportunities wherein they can fuse their vocation and avocation without any dilemma.”

Ms. Sangeeta Taak, speaking on behalf of RGNUL, Patiala, said: “We are more than happy to host Humane Society International/India and The Jurists for the event. This is an incredible opportunity for the students to actually involve themselves within the framework of legal education. The evaluation parameters are going to be extremely strict in particular and we are already excited thinking about the level of competition we are going to witness in this event.”

HSI/India along with its partner organizations has been working to create a pool of legally trained animal welfare advocates who can assist enforcement officials in resolving animal cruelty cases. In May 2016, HSI/India and People for Animals launched a campaign called #NoMore50 calling for higher penalties for animal cruelty. As part of this campaign, people from all spheres of life, including politicians, lawmakers and celebrities, have lent their support to the demand for stronger animal protection laws in the country.

Media Contact: Navamita Mukherjee, email: nmukherjee@hsi.org, mobile: 91-9985472760

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