Activists fume after Disha Patani posts photo of ‘pet’ parrot

New Delhi: Bollywood actress Disha Patani’s love for animals can land her in soup. Animal rights activists have objected to one of her Instagram post where she has posted a picture on Indian Ringneck Parakeet.

According to her Instagram post, the Baaghi 2 actress has a pet parrot and she has named it Gohan after a character in the Dragon Ball manga series. Patani had posted the picture of the bird last year however it has come to the notice of activists now.

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“She is having an India Ringneck parakeet and promoting it on her Instagram. I request activists from Maharashtra to file a case. Parakeet looks juvenile in the picture. It’s illegal to keep any Indian parakeet as a pet and buying, selling and keeping them is illegal and can attract fine and/or imprisonment,” Delhi-based animal activist Abhinav Srihan wrote on Facebook.

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My little gohan ❤️🌺

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According to Schedule IV of the Wildlife Protection Act (1972) and Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1960, caging native birds is an offence.

Patani, an animal lover, keeps posting pictures with dogs and cats but her last year picture with ringneck parakeet may land her in trouble. However, it cannot be ascertained if she still has the bird at her home.

Srihan said, it’s illegal to keep any Indian wildlife animal or bird as pet according to Wildlife Protection Act 1972. The picture Disha shared is of an Indian Ringneck parakeet, which is schedule VI species in WPA. She should come up with an explanation and statement against keeping any Indian wildlife as pet so that none of her followers will get influenced to go against the law. She should also be careful before sharing any such picture and mention it on the picture itself that it’s illegal to keep any wildlife as pet and under what circumstances these pictures were captured.

Despite the blanket ban since 1990-91 on trade in all India bird species, hundreds of parrots are collected and traded annually in India.

They are taken from the wild and smuggled to various parts of the country and beyond. The bulk of the trade is in three to four week old chicks.

Parrots are caught using nets and bird-lime. Adult parrots are traded throughout the year, with chicks arrive for trade between December and June. For every bird that reaches the market place, several are believed to die en route.

In Patani’s comment section of the post, people have informed her about the rule and also criticised the actress for curtailing the freedom of a bird.

Srihan explained there have been many bad examples already where animals had to suffer because of irresponsible celebrity/media behaviours. Many pugs have been dumped at animal shelters after people realised about the health issues of the dog. After pugs featured in ads of a telecom service provider, there was huge influx in its sale. Demand for owls (as exotic pets) also increased and so did poaching.