Animals in Islamabad Zoo continue to suffer

Animals in Islamabad Zoo continue to suffer

An emaciated wolf rested on an ice block to seek relief from stifling heat in a zoo in the capital of Pakistan, while another looked at a family enjoying an evening picnic as an elephant swung his head nearby.

The elephant, named Kavaan, produced global headlines for the zoo in 2016 when pop star Cher sent officials to check their living circumstances after being chained there for 27 of its 29 years.

Now, the zoo is again receiving headlines as public organizations in Islamabad are tussling over who is accountable for its management, leaving neglected animals to run out of food and clean water, with many falling sick.

Owais Awan, a lawyer who has gone to court to help resolve the issue said that the animals are suffering in this tug of war between federal and local governments over the zoo.

The Islamabad High Court instructed the municipal corporation to hand over the zoo management to the Ministry of Climate Change on Friday, but a ministry official said the corporation had shut down its offices and the zoo management was unwilling to meet.

Ministry secretary Hassan Nasir Jamy said that the keepers of the animals are there, but not the management. He said that they are sending volunteers and vets to check on the animals as they are afraid of the animals dying. Despite repeated letters and telephone calls, the reluctance of the zoo management to speak to authorities in the ministry amounted to contempt of court, he said.

The deputy director of the zoo declined to comment on the metropolitan corporation of Reuters and Islamabad could not be reached. The court called for urgent measures to save the animals from further harm, ordering instant therapy for a Himalayan bear wounded in a fight with another bear, said zoo officials, and also suffering a long-term skin condition.

Sana Jamal, a spokesperson for a group of about 40 citizens working to improve the zoo facilities said that the animals have been suffering.

“Whenever we have visited, there was no food and water in most of the enclosures. That’s the main reason we wanted to pressurize the ministry to officially take over.” – Sana Jamal

I am soon to be a Computer Engineer from Sir Syed University, Karachi. I have a deep interest in Global Entertainment, Pakistani and Sports News. I have a keen sense and knowledge about writing news and research work. Hoping to be a better influence on the planet earth.