It is nothing short of shocking that in Sindh which has Karachi, the major philanthropy center of Pakistan, has no major laws dealing with cruelty to animals. The 1894 Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act is very old and no one is bothering to up date it. The Wildlife Department has a non-functional website and is hardly taking interest in the subject to cruelty to animals.
The major law governing the Wildlife Department is the Sindh Wildlife Protection Ordinance 1972 which has no specific provision dealing with cruelty to animals. The following features mostly relate to hunting to animals which is cruel in itself and section 10 deals with establishment of private zoos. But they are the only salient provisions in the 1972 Ordinance that come close to preventing cruelty to animals.
The Province, like the other provinces, need a new law on this subject.
- Restrictions on Hunting.
No person shall:
- Hunt any protected animal;
- Hunt any game animal except under a permit and in accordance with the provisions of this Ordinance or the rules;
- hunt any wild animal by means of a set-gun, drop spear, deadfall, gun trap, explosive projectile, bomb, grenade, baited hook, net, snare or any other trap, an automatic weapon, or a weapon of a caliber used by the Pakistan Army or Police Force or by means of a projectile containing any drug or chemical substance having the property of an anaesthetizing, paralysing, stupifying or rendering incapable an animal whether partly or totally;
- Hunt any game animal, other than birds or hares, with a shot gun or with non-magnum rifle of ’22 caliber or less;
- use, or have in his possession any net, snare, bhagwa, poison or like injurious substance for the purpose of hunting a game animal;
- Use vehicle of any type to pursue any game animal, or to drive or stampede game animals for any purpose whatsoever;
- Shoot any game animal from any conveyance or from within 200 yards of the conveyance;
- Hunt with the help of decoys or call birds;
- Construct or use, for the purpose of hunting any wild animal any pitfall, game pit, trench or similar excavation, any fence or enclosure, or use bhagwa or any other similar contrivance:
Provided that it shall not be an offence to use:
(a) a motor vehicle or aircraft to drive any wild animal away from an aerodrome or airstrip when such action is necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft using that aerodrome;
(b) any one or more of the aforesaid prohibited methods if the officer authorized in this behalf grants, at his discretion, a licence with permission to employ such methods;
(x) Hunt after sunset and before sunrise;
(xi) hunt by hiding near a water hole or salt licks.
8. Prohibition to employ hawks and dogs without special licence.
No person shall use hawks for hawking or dogs for coursing the game animals except under a special licence issued under this Ordinance.
9. Animals found dead or killed or caught unlawfully.
Any protected animal or game animal which is found dead or dying, or which has been killed or caught otherwise than in accordance with the Provisions of this Ordinance and any meat or trophy thereof shall be the property of Government.
10. Certificate of Lawful Possession.
(1) No person shall be in possession of any wild animal dead or alive, trophy or meat of a protected animal or the horns of Goral, Ibex Sindh Wild Goat, Markhor or Urial, or Skin of Beech or Stone Martan, Jungle Cats and Desert Cats unless he be in possession of a Certificate of Lawful Possession granted in respect thereof by the officer authorized in this behalf: Provided that any person importing any wild animal, trophy or meat of a wild animal in accordance with this Ordinance, or acquiring such animal, trophy or meat in accordance with the terms of permit issued under this ordinance, shall obtain such certificate by applying to the authorized officer within thirty days from the date of importing or acquiring the animal, trophy or meat.
(2) The officer authorized in this behalf may mark or register, the animal, trophy or meat in respect of which a Certificate of Lawful Possession is issued, in the prescribed manner or he may seize, pending the taking of legal action under, this Ordinance, any such animal, trophy or meat which in his opinion has not been legally imported or acquired.
(3) No person shall counterfeit, change or in any way interfere with any marks or registration put on any animal, trophy or meat for which a Certificate of Lawful Possession has been issued, or alter or in any way change a Certificate of Lawful Possession.
11. Restriction on transfer of animals, trophies or meat.
(1) No person shall transfer by gift, sale or otherwise to any other person any animal, trophy or meat of a kind specified in sub-section (1) of section 10 unless he be in possession of a Certificate of Lawful Possession in respect thereof, and such certificate is endorsed with details of the transaction and given to the transferee at the time of the transfer.
(2) No person shall receive by gift, purchase or otherwise any animal, trophy or meat of a kind specified in sub-section (1) of section 10 unless he receives at the same time valid Certificate of Lawful Possession in respect thereof.
12. Restriction on import and export of animals, trophies or meat.
(1) No person shall import or attempt to import into Sindh any wild animal of an endemic or exotic species, or any trophy or meat of a kind specified in sub-section (1) of section 10 except under an import permit granted under this Ordinance and if such import be from outside Pakistan except through a customs post of entry and subject to any law relating to control on imports for the time being in force.
(2) No person shall export, or attempt to export any animal, trophy or meat specified in sub-section (1) of section 10 except under an export permit granted under this Ordinance, and if such export be to any country outside Pakistan except through a customs post of exit and subject to any law relating to control on exports for the time being in force.
(3) Nothing in this section shall apply to any animal, trophy or meat in transit through Sindh, if such animal, trophy or meat:
(i) is accompanied by necessary transit customs documents;
(ii) is entered through a customs post of entry or is scheduled to a Customs post of exit;
(iii) is not unloaded from the ship or motor vehicle on which it is being carried or, in the case of rail or air transport, it does not leave the precincts of the railway station or airport at which it is landed or trans-shipped or does not remain there for more than forty-eight hours.
13. Restriction on Dealing in Animals, Trophies Or Meat.
(1) No person shall as a profession, trade or business, buy, sell or otherwise deal in wild animals, trophies or meat thereof, or process or manufacture goods or articles from such trophies or meat, unless he be in possession of a valid licence to do so, hereinafter called a dealer’s licence issued by the officer authorised in this behalf.
(2) The officer authorised in this behalf may on payment of such fees as may be prescribed grant a dealer’s licence to any person, which shall entitle that person to deal in any wild animal, trophy or meat thereof, or any class of wild animals, trophies or meat specified in such licence.
(3) For the purpose of assessment of fees dealers may be divided into different classes and a different fee may be prescribed for each class.
(4) The holder of a dealer’s licence shall maintain such register or record of his dealings in such manner as may be prescribed, and shall produce them for inspection at any reasonable time when called upon to do so.