When the Animal Nepal team recently reached Kantipur Brick Factory and found that sick ‘brick donkeys’ were kept together with healthy ones, they immediately rolled up their sleeves. Together with the equine owners, they build an isolation unit. The team were able to treat over 16 equines suffering from saddle wounds, hoof problems, dehydration, skin problems and/or undernourishment. Continue reading “‘A donkey is not a machine’”
“Please stop the abuse against equines working in brick factories. They do not deserve a life like this. Hire humans to work not equines, don’t just look at money. Have a heart and stop all this abuse.” – Sita Pun
“If you have animals working for you, it is your job to make sure they are in good health at least. I hope government will activate some projects to monitor health and hygiene.” – Sidhanta Shrestha
“Giving torture to such innocent animal is the example of cruelty…need to stop right now…” – Hema Gurung
These were some of the comments among the 125,000 signatures collected in just two weeks to stop equine abuse in Nepal’s brick factories. The petition was posted by Animal Nepal on Care2.com to raise awareness about the grave abuse by some owners.
The petition was handed over to Mr Mahendra Bahadur Chitrakar, President of the Federation of Nepal Brick Industries, on May 12, 2013. The Federation of Brick Industries is committed to promoting a responsible industry, and has taken a strong stance against child labour.
Animal abuse is a new theme for the industry, explained Mr Chitrakar, who has agreed to discuss the issue with the members. Animal Nepal has developed a Memorandum of Understanding for the entrepreneurs involved, in which they commit to reject sick, pregnant or handicapped equines and support improved management in terms of shelter, feeding, no beating, no overloading, first aid kit, 8-hour working hours, and providing one holiday per week.
The petition is directed to the Ministers of Agriculture, Finance and Industries, who will receive the petition next week.
‘This is awful.” That was the reaction of Dr. Bodh Prasad Parajuli, Chief of Central Animal Quarantine Office, when he saw the conditions of working equines in brick factories on April 29, 2013. The government chief visited Santaneshwor Brick Factory, among Lalitpur’s worst fourteen brick factories employing equines.
Dr Parajuli warned the equine owners that equine abuse cannot be accepted by his Department. He also realized the owners do not possess the required health cards.
Animal Nepal has urged government authorities such as Department of Livestock Services, Animal Health and Quarantine to address the issue of equine abuse in brick factories.
Dr Parajuli agreed to promote detailed monitoring in quarantine check posts and is to activate the Veterinary Council of Nepal and Nepal Veterinary Association to stop the distribution of health certificates for unhealthy equines. It is agreed that a joint meeting with the various government agencies will be held to address the problems in an effective and lasting manner.
Animal Nepal requested Dr Parajuli to strictly follow existing regulations, especially when equines are imported from India, and to improve conditions during the transportation of equines from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj and vice versa.