This paper focuses on poaching of wildlife and the significance of animal rights in Pakistan and internationally and how architecture can be utilized to overcome such obstacle.
This paper will focus on animal rights and violation of these rights, such as poaching and wildlife trafficking etc. There exists an idea that every living being, whether it be a human being, an animal or even a plant shall be safeguarded under some principles and hence the concept of rights originates under these ideals. Animal rights are as significant as human rights and are imposed all over the world. When these rights are violated they have repercussions on the environment and eco system. Poaching also known as illegal hunting of animals is a huge violation as well as wildlife trafficking. Animal cruelty is quite common within Pakistan and is of little consequence.
As human beings have rights so do animals, it is not just another phrase or slogan, it is something that should be taken very seriously. It is our ethical and religious obligation and the sooner we realize this the better. A few basic animal rights can be stated as following,
- Right to freedom.
- Right to shelter
- Right to be fed
- Right to medical care
- No animal trafficking
- No experimentation
- Not to be used for entertainment
- Not to be hunted or captured
These are just a few out of a long list of rights. Animals are sentient beings, they feel and perceive in a very similar way as human beings and they should be given as much significance as us. Animals are voiceless, they cannot fend for themselves, so it is our obligation to stand up for them, as human beings are a superior species. These rights as we call them are some principles and guidelines under which animals are protected. Under these principles rights of every animal should be safeguarded regardless of their genus. In today’s world animal rights is an issue. Animal rights are decimated on a substantial level on a daily basis. In one way or another animals are abused, it’s a harsh reality and most people are ignorant of this fact or at least they act like it. Animal rights are violated in tons of way, from poaching to illegal trafficking of animals and even exploitation of poultry and cattle. Violation of animal rights without any consequences is the sole reason it’s still abundant and intensifying, rapid decrease in the numbers of various species and extinction is a direct repercussion of such acts. Animal rights in Pakistan are not even considered an issue by many including the government, animal cruelty is common among the masses and no legal action is taken against such atrocities. People refer to animal rights as an affair or a controversy of western countries. Even though Pakistan is a Muslim majority country with Islamic principles and laws as its constitution and Islam preaches about animal rights the masses are not aware and ignorant. In Pakistan the concept of adopting a pet is non-existent and animal shelters or sanctuaries are hard to come by in Pakistan. Mostly stray animals are killed or they die due to an injury or accidents. At a certain age the animals are discarded and left to die. The purpose of the shelter is to provide stray or abandoned animals with health and care and afterwards adoption comes into play when such animals are adopted by people. In Pakistan animal shelter could be fruitful.
The Impact of Wildlife Poaching
Illegal hunting or capturing of wildlife is defined as poaching. Poaching is one of the worst forms of animal rights violation. Poaching usually occurs when a certain animal possess something that is considered valuable. Ivory trade is one of the biggest motivation for poaching. What is ivory trade? Animals with tusks and horns such as elephants and rhinoceros have a certain white material (similar to keratins in our nails) in their horns that is considered medicinal in cultures and countries and is used in medical practices, in order to extract this the animal is killed, the illegal trade of this material is known as ivory trade. The numbers of such animals have fallen drastically, such as,
- Black Rhino population down 97.6% since 1960.
- African elephants 35000 killed each year.
Elephants and rhinos are killed everywhere in the world for ivory, be it Africa, India and in majority areas of Asia. Other than ivory trade animals such as tigers, lions, zebras, silver back gorillas, deer’s and countless other are killed at the cost of our luxuries. In Pakistan poaching is an abundant. Even high ranking officials have been involved in poaching. Even state sponsored poaching has been witnessed in few accounts, such as, the prince of Qatar was issued special permit to hunt the internationally protected Houbara Bustard in hunting season 2016-17. Pakistan is rich in biodiversity and wildlife and is an attraction for poachers from all around the world, some animals that are frequently poached are, Pangolins, Houbara Bustard, Markhor, Snow Leopard and countless migratory birds are poached right here in the capital Islamabad. Animals at constant threat from poachers are placed within reserves or wildlife parks, these sanctuaries are protected and the animals with are also protected. The concept of such reserves is new in Pakistan but by implementing such measures it can assured that these animals are protected. The situation has deteriorated up to the extent that the only way to protect these animals is to place them in zoos, zoos can be designed or planned in such a way that they accommodate a comfortable life style for wildlife. Through smart and creative designing and planning we can preserve these animals even in Pakistan.
The irreversible Effects of Animal Trafficking
Wild life trafficking or smuggling is defined as the illegal trade, distribution and gathering of animals and their derivatives, this is done internationally and domestically. Animals indigenous to one part of the world are illegally trafficked to other locations, alive and derivatives of animals are trafficked for various reasons, for example, pets, meat, skin, ivory and many other derivatives. This is done mainly by air and by sea. Due to this the wildlife becomes endangered and cause an instability in the eco-system. The biggest case of animal trafficking causing instability in an eco-system is that of, African Rock Python is native to Africa but due trafficking it has spread throughout Florida in USA, same is the case with Burmese Python which native to South East Asia and now it has spread all over North and South America. In Pakistan illegal trading of wildlife is a reality. In Pakistan the main reason for illegal trade is poor management and lenient penalties, the wildlife of Pakistan is exploited in the name of medicine. The methods are insufficient to prevent this criminal activity and bribery as a common tactic used by these people. Most common animals that are trafficked from Pakistan are,
- Fresh water turtle
- Cobra, viper and Indian Rock Python
- Fur animals
- This is a major threat to the eco-system and its spreading rapidly.
Animal trafficking should be discouraged, it not only harms the environment but it has adverse effects on the animals too.
Causes and Effects of Poultry and Cattle Farming
One of most brutal violations of animal rights is breeding and distribution of poultry and exploitation of cattle for our sake. The population of Earth is growing at an exponential rate and to meet the requirements and need of the people certain methods are being practiced which are less time consuming and more cost effective but at the end animals have to face hideous consequences. There are two aspects of this discussion,
Poultry is one of the biggest industries in the world and one most profitable, what they have done is simply decreased the cost of their product and the production time at the same time they have increased the units produced, how they have done this? Well, first of all they hatch chicks in an incubator and after that they induce hormonal growth and speed up their growth rate through steroids induced in their feed and at the same time they separate the female for egg production and males for meat production. At the top of that the living conditions of the animals are terrible and they are given no proper health care, due to this annually 100 million chicken die. This act of cruelty starts at the very start, when the chicks hatch and continues throughout their life. Even in Pakistan the poultry farms have very similar conditions and the very same outcomes and methods.
Very similar to poultry cattle farming has an equal share in the violations of animal rights. Cows are gentle creatures, the way they are treated is beyond comprehension. At the first the males are separated at birth from their mothers and so are the females, the sole purpose of the males is to be used as food and they are physically exploited through unnatural food and methods, that speeds up the growth process and some are slaughtered at a very young age, and the living conditions cause the loss of many animals, even before slaughter they face a lot of harsh conditions, from horn removal to sterilization. As for the females their sole purpose is milk and for that they require a calf, so what the farmers do, they apply artificial insemination causing them to produce calves and milk. An average cow has a life span of 20 years but due to these conditions a cow is labeled useless within 4 to 5 years and after that even females are to be slaughter. If an animal survives being slaughtered they are just shot in head in the name of mercy.
The Effect and the Relation of Urbanization
At the start of human settlement, the numbers were few, the resources they required were lesser and they coexisted with wild life, hunting was practiced even back then but the purpose was food and as the humans developed they started using animals for other proposes as well the animals were domesticated, they were caged and used for entertainment, they were confined within boundaries and they were restricted and as the population increased the animals were confined to bigger cages and pens, structures were created just to cage and display these animals and along the way animals were hunted as a sport and trophies and to prevent such activities wild life reserves were created to protect the animals. On the other hand domesticated animals were exploited for the use of humans, and this exploitation became so common that it paved a way for commercial activity, human beings started profiteering financially through the suffering of animals. Farms turned into corporate enterprises. Exploitation of animals became a business whether it be the poultry or cattle farming or ivory trade or zoos.