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PIL in HC against keeping egg-laying hens in small cages

A PIL against keeping egg-laying hens in wired cages was filed today in the Delhi High Court, after the Supreme Court’s direction that all such matters going on in various states should be transferred there.

The petition by the Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organisations (FIAPO), which is one of several pleas filed in various high courts, has opposed setting up of a battery cage farm in western Uttar Pradesh where around 1.5 lakh egg-laying hens would be confined, saying it amounts to “extreme cruelty”.

Under the battery caging system, egg-laying hens are confined to space equivalent to an A-4 size paper sheet. In Europe which follows the cage-free system, hens get space to move around and spread their wings, FIAPO said in its plea.

The plea was listed before a bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice Sangita Dhingra Sehgal which directed its listing with other similar pleas on December 5. FIAPO has contended that the battery cage farm is to be set up by Big Dutchman Agriculture India Pvt Ltd, which is the Indian arm of a German multinational corporation Big Dutchman International GmbH. It has said the use of battery/wire cages was contrary to provisions of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals 1960. The petition was initially filed before the Allahabad High Court.
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