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挪威、西班牙、爱尔兰三国先后宣布将承认巴勒斯坦国,释放什么信号? | 8k8 com login | Updated: 2024-07-15 19:41:04

A cat receives treatment at an animal care center voluntarily run by students in Chittagong, Bangladesh, on Aug 6, 2022. ANADOLU AGENCY/VCG

About seven years ago, animal lover Anika Islam began rescuing and protecting animals — particularly stray cats and dogs — in her local community in Bangladesh.

"These poor animals cannot talk. They cannot communicate with us. If they are feeling discomfort or pain, they cannot tell us," she said.

"So, of course we should do our best to help them."

From the start of her journey as an animal rescuer, Anika has found support in online communities, particularly Facebook groups, in which she could ask questions or reach out to like-minded individuals.

Seeing the benefit of working in tandem with other animal lovers, Anika began her own online group with those interested in the same issues.

The group of 15 friends would go on to feed and rescue countless animals in their neighborhoods. They also worked with other organizations to spay and neuter dogs in their areas.

Whenever they receive information about an animal being abused, they try to raise awareness about animal rights and even help turn many people into animal lovers.

However, members of this group were left shaken to their core when a stray dog was mercilessly beaten to death by guards on the premises of a footwear factory in Gazipur, a city in central Bangladesh, in early March.

Video footage of the incident went viral on social media.

The Animal Welfare Act 2019 in Bangladesh states that anyone found guilty of abusing or hurting an animal can be sentenced to two years in prison or fined about $425 or both. Despite this law, animal cruelty continues unabated in the country.

Allegedly, when Anika and numerous others tried to seek justice for the inhumane killing of the dog in Gazipur, they found very few legal solutions. Regardless of the law, the implementation and awareness surrounding the act seem almost nonexistent.

Desperate to find some justice, Anika, along with her friends and numerous others, recently formed a human chain in front of Jatiya Press Club in the capital Dhaka.

About 25 of them gathered there, equipped with placards and signs. They also handed out leaflets containing the most vital parts of the Animal Welfare Act 2019.

Hazara Synthea Shaoleen, an animal rescuer who attended the protest, said, "We wanted to raise awareness about the issue of animal rights, because not many people know there are laws that protect animals in our country."

Barrister Sheikh Robaiyat Islam also joined their efforts after seeing the passion with which Anika and her friends were going about trying to get justice for stray animals that are killed.

He was previously involved in the writ petition filed to control unregulated fireworks — particularly in relation to the hazard caused to wildlife.

"A general diary(GD) was filed but no action has been taken yet. If this goes to a criminal court, it is unlikely to go anywhere. However, if we file a writ petition with the High Court to implement the existing law, then we might get some results," he said.

"I will try my best to support this cause. Many other people were involved in the initial GD filing, but backed out when we spoke about filing a writ petition. However, Anika and her friends have come forward to take on that responsibility. Hopefully, we can make the Animal Welfare Act 2019 a more solid law that is implemented properly."


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