New Delhi: The Supreme Court has recently dismissed a public interest litigation filed challenging many aspects of the zoo being established at Jamnagar Gujarat by the Greens Zoological Rescue and Rehabilitation Center Society at Jamnagar (GZRRC) which is supported by Reliance Industries Limited.
The petition was filed by an activist challenging the establishment of the zoo. He also requested a ban on the GZRRC from acquiring animals from India and abroad, as well as an SIT to investigate the operations and management of the GZRRC. The transfer of animals to the GZRRC from India and abroad has been questioned in the petition. Questions were also raised in the PIL about the experience and capacity of the GZRRC. After the GZRRC submitted its detailed response, the Court heard the case on August 16, 2022 and dismissed the motion dismissing all allegations raised against the GZRRC.
“We at GZRRC are affected by the decision of the Honorable Supreme Court. We will continue our work for animal welfare. The GZRRC is committed to animal welfare, rescue, rehabilitation and conservation as well as providing world-class rehabilitation care to animals that need to be rescued from harsh conditions,” said Mr. Dhanraj Nathwani, Head of Organization, GZRRC.
The Court noted the observations of the GZRRC regarding its infrastructure, its operation, the veterinarians, curators, biologists, zoologists and other experts engaged by it and the fact that it carried out its activities in strict compliance with the law. The GZRRC clarified in court that it would establish a zoological park which would be open to the public primarily for educational purposes while the rest of its facilities would operate as rescue centers for the welfare of animals in need of rescue. not only from India but everywhere. the world with the goal of animal welfare, rescue, rehabilitation and conservation.
The Court declared itself satisfied with the response filed by the GZRRC and observed that it was satisfied that the authorization granted to the GZRRC for the operations and transfer of animals and its consequential activities are legal and authorized. It was further observed that while the allegations against the GZRRC were loosely based on news reports, to the Court, there “appears no infirmity” on the part of the authorities granting permits and approvals to the GZRRC. The Court also noted with approval the GZRRC’s argument that it is a non-profit organization whose primary objective is animal welfare and the revenue generated, if any, would only be used. by the GZRRC only to carry out salvage work.
The court said it found “no logic or basis” for the allegations against GZRRC. The Court also said that there was “virtually no possibility” to challenge the operation of the GZRRC and, further, the Court “found no legal infirmity” with the GZRRC.