!http://photos11.flickr.com/15040031_fcb86eb7e9_m.jpg! It has come to our notice that ‘freshwater turtles in the Punjab are being brutally massacred’:http://www.dawn.com/2005/05/21/nat31.htm for profit at a scale that puts their very existence at risk. Not only is their killing being carried out in an extremely brutal fashion, there is absolutely no check on the numbers that are being lost daily and how this must be impacting the biodiversity of the river systems.
!http://photos12.flickr.com/15040030_a6512bb16e_o.jpg! The Punjab Wildlife Departmentâ€™s nonchalant response to this crisis proves them unworthy custodians of wildlife in the Punjab. Instead of waiting for legislation to arm them with a right to action they should be actively formulating laws and stretching definitions that would allow them to fulfill their responsibilities. If nothing else, Pakistanâ€™s Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act is sufficient authority to put a stop to this.
Turtles are one of the oldest continuing species on this planet, representing over 200 million years of evolutionary history. Their populations should be protected and valued as a national natural heritage.
We [the undersigned] demand that this senseless violence come to an end immediately, that the perpetrators be arrested and fined and the relevant departments made to carry out their mandates.
Pakistan Animal Welfare Society (PAWS)
1. Maheen Zia (PAWS)
Filmmaker / Teacher, Karachi