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10 women who are animal rights activists on twitter, working to spread awareness about animal rights and welfare amongst people.
In 2002, Matthew Scully published a book titled Dominion: The Power of Man, the Suffering of Animals, and the Call to Mercy where he argued that no matter your politics or religious preference, caring for the world’s animals is a unique human responsibility.
This is hardly a new argument. Animals form an integral part of our environment and our ecosystem. But human beings have gone about their lives without caring for them; cutting down forests, destroying their natural habitat, killing them for money and sheer entertainment. It is high time people realize their responsibility towards other creatures, simply because they don’t have a voice of their own and need us to speak for them and protect them.
These 10 remarkable women in India are heading forth in that direction, setting an example for everyone around. 10 animal rights activists who are speaking up for mute animals who cannot talk of their plight or fight for themselves, on Twitter.
Protégé of Maneka Gandhi, Gauri Maulekhi is an animal rights activist and a co-opted member of the Animal Welfare Board of India. She started working for People for Animals in Lucknow in 1995 as a volunteer, where she contributed greatly in setting up the first animal shelter in the city. She then joined the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) in Noida where she workedfrom 2004 to 2008.
She was part of raids related to cruelty to animals. This is where she also stepped into the legal area of animal rights and welfare. In 2010 she set up People For Animals in Uttarakhand.
Gauri Maulekhi has led multiple successful campaigns for animal rights, the most well known being the campaign against sacrificial slaughtering of cattle. You can follow her on twitter where she expresses her opinion on animal rights issues helping to spread awareness.
Follow her here on twitter.
The Economic Times described her as a ‘Writer by profession and an animal welfare worker by vocation’ in their article that dates back to 2015, and the line pretty much sums up Anoopa Anand.
Anoopa had grown up surrounded by animals and it was her love for them that made her open a pet sitting service to bring back companionship of animals in her new life, but the realization of the sheer number of animals on the streets who did not get the care they needed led to the transformation of her service “Nanny Woof” into a place for abandoned, abused animals to recover till they find a permanent home. Anoopa has become one of the most trusted animal welfare workers in Bangalore due to her assistance in rescuing , fostering , rehabilitating and re-homing animals in need.
After completing her Masters degree in Environment and Ecology from the Indian Institute of Ecology and Environment, Delhi, Nevina decided to work with wildlife. However she soon realized the “problem of plenty” syndrome with street animals in India. Nobody cared for them and the animals were left on the streets sick, hungry and homeless. That was the time she started her work in animal welfare. But it took her 5-6 years to realize that without working with the municipality one cannot make a significant contribution in improving the condition of the strays.
Nevina conducts various sensitization programs and awareness campaigns in schools and colleges besides working as an on ground animal rescuer.
Daughter of Home Minister of Bengaluru, Ramalinga Reddy, Sowmya completed her degree in Chemical Engineering and then went on to pursue her Masters in Environment Technology from New York Institute of Technology. In college she started an animal rights and environmental group called Sanjeevini and then connected to a wider network in Bengaluru. With years of experience in grass root activism.
Sowmya is one of the most well known animal rights activists in Bengaluru. She is also an ex-member of Animal Welfare Board of India.
One of the lesser known faces in animal activism, Yasmine is a school teacher by profession and her house is a refuge for all the homeless or abandoned cats and dogs in the city. With the support of her husband, Yasmine has transformed her house into a haven for animals.
On twitter, Yasmine is very vocal on issues centered around but not limited to animals. Her tweets range from hilarious commentary of her life with her furry companions to serious criticism of social systems and corruption in the country.
A young Marine Scientist who grew up in Southern India, Tanvi is studying seahorses. She is a PhD candidate at Project Seahorse, Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries who is working on conserving seahorses. She is trying to conserve species that are caught by accident in fishing nets. With the increase in water pollution, incidents of oil spills and excessive fishing practices, Oceanic life is shrinking rapidly with a number of species facing extinction. Sea horses are traded illegally across the globe. Dried Seahorses are extensively traded for traditional Chinese Medicine and curios and live sea horses are traded to a lesser extent for aquarium trade.
Project seahorse aims at protecting seahorses and through them supports the conservation of the entire marine ecosystem.
A Conservative Biologist born in Mangalore, Krithi is currently an Associate Conservation Scientist with Wildlife Conservation Society,New York and the executive director at Center for Wildlife Studies, Bangalore. She works on issues such as Human Animal-Conflict and Land Use Change. She has been researching on wildlife in India for the past 16 years and has become the torch bearer for wildlife conservation in India having worked on more than 25 projects in the country. Her wall on twitter is filled with posts about wild animals and birds and the threats or problems that they face.
One of India’s leading environmental journalists and a widely published author, Prerna Bindra has been on the forefront of the battle to conserve wildlife resources of India for over a decade. She was a member of India’s National Board for Wildlife and its core standing committee from 2010 to 2013. She has also served on Uttarakhand’s State Board for Wildlife. She mainly focuses on protecting wildlife habitats and critically endangered species. Her fascination and love for animals is quite evident from her twitter account where her wall is filled with posts about birds and animals ranging from dogs and cats to lions and snow leopards.
The Tamil Actress is a popular face on the big screen but her acting skill is not the only admirable trait she possesses. The actress is also an animal rights activist and has been associated with People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) through which she advocates and promotes the adoption of stray animals. She has spoken out against experimentation and product testing on animals in laboratories. She wrote a letter to the government requesting for action to be undertaken to release 70 beagles, who had allegedly been imported from China as ‘pets’, but most probably were to be used for some experiments. She faced immense backlash on social media for taking a stand against Jallikattu, a traditional bull taming event in Tamil Nadu.
A molecular ecologist working as an associate professor at NCBS, Uma and her team work on the conservation of endangered mammals of the Indian subcontinent such as wild cats, leopards and macaque monkeys. Her name today is synonymous with tiger conservation in India. Born in Bengaluru and brought up in The Indian Institute of Science where her father was a physicist, Uma was introduced to nature early on in life. From there grew her love for animals and her determination to make a change. She is a member of National Board for Wildlife, a Ramanujan fellow and a DAE Outstanding scientist. Her twitter wall bears evidence of her immense knowledge and love for the wildlife and she posts regularly making people aware of the rising threats to animals.
From taking care of stray dogs to intensive research to save a species, these women have taken a step in the right direction, on a road very few people take, inspiring women across the country to follow their footsteps and making them realize that those are the small steps that help us to make big changes in the world.
Images source Twitter and here
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B.A English Honours at Jadavpur University.
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