New Bill: Two years in prison for animal abusers

Bangladesh Parliament has passed a Bill to stop cruelty to animals. MPs passed the Bill by voice vote when State Minister for Fisheries ad Livestock Ashraf Ali Khan Khasru placed a motion to pass it on Sunday.

People found guilty of the worst cases of animal cruelty will face up to highest two years in prison under the new law. The punishment is also for not allowing a dog to exercise for a day or more is six months in jail and Tk 10,000 in fines, the same for killing an animal that has no owner, according to the Animal Welfare Bill 2019.

Earlier, the motions on its amendment were disposed of after review. The Bill was forwarded for scrutiny to the parliamentary standing committee on fisheries and livestock ministry after it was placed in parliament on Mar 10.

The new law is based on the Cruelty to Animals Act of 1920, which has now been scrapped.

The law allows an animal’s unconsciousness or painless death following the process prescribed in written form by a veterinary surgeon for logical reasons.

Actions of any person while slaughtering any animal for using its meat as food or sacrificing it following religious rituals is not deemed to be cruelty to animal under the new law.

The punishment for violating the law or abetting in the violation will be six-month jail term or Tk 10,000 fines or both.

The punishment mentioned in the 1920 law is three months in jail and Tk 1,000 in fines.

Mobile courts can be conducted under the new law but a related schedule will have to be added to the Mobile Court Act.