- Mamnoon Hussain’s protocol squad runs over an ostrich, leaves another injured at State Guest House in Karachi
- Wildlife and animal rights experts say ostrich’s death should be treated as an offence under the Pakistan Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1980 or the West Pakistan Prevention of Cruelty to Animal Rules 1961
The protocol squad of President Mamnoon Hussain ran over two ostriches when it drove into the state guesthouse in Karachi two weeks ago, a media report said on Friday, adding that one ostrich had died while the other bird has been left on the premises of the guesthouse without medical care even though its wings are broken.
According to the report, the VVIP vehicles were entering the guesthouse when the incident took place. “The protocol team ordered that the dead ostrich be taken away from the guesthouse,” the report quoted an official as saying.
According to wildlife and animal rights experts, the ostrich’s death should be treated as an offence under the Pakistan Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1980 or the West Pakistan Prevention of Cruelty to Animal Rules 1961.
“We are not authorised to speak on this issue and I cannot confirm that the incident took place inside the guesthouse,” said Junaid Ahmed, a protocol officer to the president. He added that any further information about the accident could be gleaned from the Press Information Department (PID).
A senior PID official confirmed that one ostrich remains on the premises in injured condition and has not been treated.
“Under the Pakistan Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, this offense is punishable for five years, but unfortunately the law is never put in place,” wildlife conservationist Javed Mahar told the media outfit.
Mahar said that there are nearly 3,000 ostriches in Sindh, of which 2,500 are in Karachi, brought to the city to live in residences or farmhouses. “There’s no harm in having an ostrich in a residence, but these birds need adequate nourishment and appropriate shelter,” he said.
According to experts, ostrich farming takes place around the world and the birds’ feathers are used for decorative purposes while ostrich skin is used for leather products and its meat is marketed commercially.