Tough new animal welfare board guidelines for moviemakers

May 29th, 2008 - 4:59 pm ICT by admin  

Mumbai, May 29 (IANS) Taking a serious note of ill treatment of animals while using them in movies, the Chennai-based Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) has sent new guidelines to producers across the country. There are now as many as 26 conditions for getting the AWBI permission to use animals in movies.

Most producers do not follow the guidelines laid down by AWBI, often leading to objections, a crackdown by the authorities and a disruption of the shooting schedule.

To tackle this problem, AWBI secretary D. Rajasekar has now dispatched the board’s rulebook to different associations of producers, urging them to ensure that their members follow the rules.

The circular dated May 8 issued by AWBI reached the offices of the producers’ associations in Mumbai Wednesday.

Producers using animals in their movies will have to apply to AWBI for permission a month before the shooting starts, states the circular. The filmmakers are also asked to send in their applications directly and not to hire brokers or agents to obtain the permission.

Animals being used in movies must have ownership certificates. If wild animals are being used, producers must obtain the ownership certificate from the wildlife authorities, along with the latest health certificate from a registered veterinary doctor.

If shootings not held within the mandatory period of six weeks after getting the pre-shoot clearance from AWBI, the filmmakers will have to get a fresh set of health certificates.

The health certificate is necessary even for the scenes where artistes have to sit in carts drawn by animals.

After finishing the shoot, producers have to submit the clippings in CDs to AWBI for scrutiny of those scenes that involve animals.

The animals’ owners must provide a veterinary doctor throughout the shooting.

AWBI has banned the use of tigers, panthers, lions, bears and monkeys in movies.

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