Karachi Zoo won’t be receiving any food supplies due to non-payment. According to a report by ARY News, the contractor pasted a notice at the zoo saying they won’t be delivering food supplies because the bills have not been cleared by the Karachi Municipal Corporation (KMC) since February this year.

The heart-breaking video of an emaciated lion at the zoo accompanying the report has led many animal rights activists and journalists to implore authorities to immediately address the abysmal conditions at Karachi Zoo.

“We have no right to zoos if this is how we treat animals….Karachi Zoo fails to pay food suppliers….The animals are already in awful shape. My heart is breaking. Let’s shut down all zoos,” wrote journalist Quatrina Hosain on Twitter as she tagged Murtaza Wahab, Karachi’s administrator, urging him to take action.

This state of affairs didn’t happen overnight. It has been deteriorating for years – a 2014 article that appeared in Dawn newspaper called the zoo “a death trap for animals” – but it is likely that the pandemic has brought the crisis of mismanagement to a head. In February this year, a petition was filed against Karachi Zoo in Sindh High Court citing the conditions of animals there as “alarming.” A two-judge bench headed by Justice Mohammad Ali Mazhar heard the petition and ordered zoo officials to present a complete record of the animals’ health and diets. But the zoo’s senior director and wildlife department official failed to appear before the court.

It has been almost a year since Islamabad’s Marghazar Zoo officially shut its gates to the public. And it seems that Karachi Zoo is well on its way to embracing a similar fate. In May 2020, Justice Athar Minallah issued a 67 page ruling calling zoos “concentration camps for living beings.” The judge ordered all 878 mammals, birds and reptiles relocated due to the Islamabad zoo’s “shockingly deplorable conditions.”

Among them were two retired Himalayan dancing bears Bubloo and Suzie who were relocated to a Jordan sanctuary and Kaavan- the “‘world’s loneliest elephant”- who began a new chapter of his life at the Cambodia Wildlife sanctuary thanks to the ceaseless efforts of volunteers, animal rights group Four Paws International (FPI) and American actress and singer Cher.

With its animals transferred to different sanctuaries and wildlife parks, the vacant 82-acres zoo awaits to be transformed into a wildlife conservation centre.

It appears that there’s little hope left for redemption and it would be in the best interests of the animals to be relocated through coordinated efforts.


From : pk.mashable.com

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