Maneka locks horns with IOC over rodeo sport
Tuesday, December 25, 2001
The Indian Express (Kolkata, India)
Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment Maneka Gandhi, known for her animal rights activism, has now locked horns with the International Olympics Committee over the proposed inclusion of rodeo sport in the games.
In a letter to IOC president Jacques Rogge, a copy of which was released here today, Gandhi contended that rodeo involved confrontation between man and animal where "the objective was to highlight the superiority of man in controlling a doctored animal which retaliates to the attempts."
Rodeo – a sport featuring bronco riding, calf roping, steer wrestling and bull riding – requires the use of physical force and implements like ropes and other tools to subjugate the animal, thereby injuring both man and animal, she said.
"We, in India, are taken aback at this proposal to introduce an event in Olympics which entails such gross and needless cruelty to animals. The Olympics which entails such gross and needless cruelty to animals. The Olympics movement reflects the sentiments and aspirations of all countries and it is necessary that each country be consulted before a decision is taken on an issue as controversial as this," she said in a strongly-worded letter.