Kolkata, Feb 22: Dressed a grim reaper, members of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals India(PETA) posed to skin a 'cow' to protest against the International Leather Goods Fair that got underway here today. With placards screaming "Leather is Evil" and "Leather is Murder" PETA protested against the 'cruel' leather industry to create awareness among the people in general. Dead skin is never fashionable and it is important to increase awareness about how animals are treated before they are turned into leather shoes, bags and other products, a PETA spokesperson said.
Buying leather contributes directly to the misery at slaughter house. The vast majority of animals used for their skin suffer horrors such as painful mutilations, deprivation of all that is natural and important to them, physical abuse and cruel treatment during transport and slaughter, the NGO stated. Animals killed for their flesh and skin are often dismembered and skinned while they are still conscious, they alleged.
In India, even the most basic animal protection laws are ignored in the leather industry. Leather tanneries also wreak havoc on the environment, and their pollution has been linked to cancer, respiratory infections and other illnesses in humans, a PETA release stated. "Bags, belts and shoes made of dead skin should be shunned, not celebrated and promoted at a fair. Since wearing skins supports unimaginable cruelty to animals, we ask everyone to think before they buy, and leave leather out of their wardrobe," said PETA representative Natasha Paul.