Animal Protection > Worldwide Actions Index > India
19 Million Animals Saved?

Approximately 19 million animals are dissected in India each year for educational purposes, but that number might be reduced to zero due to a recent University Grants Commission (UGC) request to phase out their use in favor of educational technology such as CD-ROMs, films, charts and lifelike models.

"By recommending the elimination of animal dissection, Indian's top university governing body is doing everything possible to ensure that students use the most modern education tools possible, meaning computer models over animals", said a representative of PETA India. (Source:

The animal rights organization ran an extensive campaign in India resulting in the UGC's decision to recommend phasing out the practice of animal dissection. India has over 2.5 million undergraduate and graduate students in the life sciences, who use real animals to study, which is the reason each year the total number used is about 19 million. This huge number was expected to grow because of emerging science fields and more students entering colleges and universities, so it is likely far more than 19 million animals per year would have been used. In just ten years over 200 million animals could have been killed for dissection. Frogs, sharks, salamanders, birds, snakes, turtles, and fish are some of the animals used in dissection that are captured from natural habitats.

Furthermore, discontinuing the use of real animals will save money for the educational institutions, because many have to be purchased year after year. Digital media and reusable learning aids can be purchased once and last multiple years. Additionally, educational technology is a growth industry requiring more multimedia specialists and e-learning designers, so it can support sustainable new jobs and continue improving the virtual learning experience.

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