UGC asks varsities to stop lab dissection of animals
‘This move by the UGC (of discontinuation of dissecting animals during science experiments) will save the lives of thousands of creatures. In this regard, we had written to all the universities to ensure strict adherence to the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 as well as to the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972. UGC has always accorded utmost significance to this cause,’ said a senior member of the UGC, on condition of anonymity.
As per the notification, UGC has asked all the academic institutions to come up with alternate modes of experimentation by using digital or plastinated specimen to avoid compromising on knowledge of anatomy. The expenditure for this purpose may be met out of the UGC Block Grants provided to the universities during the XII Plan period.
‘According to rough estimates, the total number of undergraduate students in our country is more than 1.5 million. If a student on an average uses two animals, this move of discontinuing dissection of animals in laboratories, will save more than 17 million animals per academic session. Moreover, these recommendations will also save a huge amount of money that is currently being spent on the purchase of animals every year by the universities and colleges for this purpose. It will also help in destroying the nexus between institutions of higher education and the catchers, killers and suppliers of dead and live animals,’ the UGC official added.