The Drug Technical Advisory Board, which operates under the ministry of health and family welfare, at its 65th meeting last week recommended a provision to be added under the Drugs & Cosmetics Rules to stop the import of cosmetics tested on animals abroad. The move comes after an extensive campaign by People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), Maneka Gandhi and other animal rights activists.
Testing on animals involves harsh chemicals used on the eyes of the rabbits and abraded skin of animals and sometimes forcefully fed to them. The tests are done, in order to determine whether the products will have any allergic or negative reaction to human skin or body.
This year, the Bureau of Indian Standard banned testing of cosmetics on animals. “After the ban comes into effect, we will focus on the next step that is a ban on animal testing of household products,” says PETA India’s science policy adviser, Dr Chaitanya Koduri, who holds an official seat on India’s Cosmetics Sectional Committee.