The Punjab and Haryana High Court has issued a notice to the Indian government, the government of Punjab and Haryana, the Poultry Federation of India and the Animal Welfare Board of India following a petition from the Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organizations.
The federation notes that a year ago, the Animal Welfare Board of India issued an advisory to all state governments stating that battery cages should not be used and existing ones should be phased out by 2017. The federation has been checking with the of Punjab and Haryana animal husbandry departments as to whether they are phasing out traditional cages and guarding against the installation of new battery cages, but concluded that no concrete action has been taken by either state.
India is the third largest egg producer in the world, and at least 70 percent of the country's eggs come from commercial farmers using traditional cages.
"The use of battery cages to confine egg-laying hens is absolutely barbaric. The cages strip away the dignity of the hens completely. It's unfathomable that living beings can be treated with such cruelty," said senior advocate Arnand Grover, representing the federation.