On New Year’s Eve while we were all congratulating each other, a video was being made of beating the magnificent Ganges dolphin with an ax and sticks in Pratapgarh, Uttar Pradesh. Shocked Dolphin was yearning to get out of the trap. Then he realized that it was impossible to escape, he gave up and was lying in the water with the lawn. The canal water became red with its blood.
The dolphin is a clever creature with feelings similar to ours. It is an endangered species and the national aquatic animal of India. It does not matter much in a country where hunting wild animals and killing street animals is a popular sport and animals are still sacrificed. But what surprised me was the glow of the faces of the young men who were killing the dolphins. It was clear that he was enjoying killing them.
The video went viral. Those who enjoy suffering love such videos. They do not matter who is being killed. Such videos garner a lot of views on social media, which is why there is ruthlessness with animals in front of the camera. The more violent the crime, the greater the impact.
Since the killing of a dolphin is punishable under Section 9/51 of the Wildlife Safety Act, 1972, I have heard that an FIR was registered and three murderers (all under 20 years of age) were arrested. Since we know how things work in UP. We do not expect much from showing resentment.
Had Prime Minister Modi not announced the project dolphin to save the endangered species last August, the local MP would have welcomed him with a flower garland.
This did not happen only in UP. A video came from Chennai in which the young medical student threw a dog from the roof of the building. The dog was picked up from the road and brought to the roof and parked on the narrow edges. He was frightened and was trying to balance. The young man then picked him up and threw him down. His scream was about to draw blood from the ears.
This also went viral. The young man and his video-making partner were let off with a small fine. Taking inspiration from him, a 21-year-old mechanical engineering student from a prestigious college in Vellore threw a month-old puppy from the roof and posted a video of it on social media. The puppy died instantly.
Animal activists search for him and find out that he has been making videos of stray puppies before. No, he doesn’t regret it either. He told the reporter, “I have killed a dog, not a human.”
You may have noticed that I did not give the names of the culprits. I do not want to give them any more publicity. Such people only live on the basis of slander. This increases their self-esteem. That is why they allow themselves to film. They know that millions of people will watch the video. They immediately get the reward of two sides of the same coin, fame and infamy. What is the harm in paying a fine of 100 rupees as punishment, when he got recognition among millions?
But mercilessness is like amoeba. It spreads rapidly, leading to more terrible crimes. If you cannot show sympathy to other species, you can never show yourself. That is why there are reports of rapes and murders of 6-month-old infants and 80-year-olds too.
No, mercilessness is just a way of living. The man who shot a checkered nailback (Dhoria snake) to the head in Mumbai last week wearing a condom on his head is no different from a man who was axed in broad daylight on a busy street in Hyderabad. Cars kept passing, passersby filming it. The video went viral. Children celebrating Diwali by tying firecrackers on the tail of stray dogs will someday take part in major violence. These are unrelated developments. They are part of the same life cycle.
Robert Radford, a character in the 1990 film Havana, says that if a butterfly flaps wings on a flower in China, it could cause a storm in the Caribbean. It also states that scientists can ‘calculate apprehensions.’ They may or may not do so, but violence tends to spread itself rapidly.