Giving Compass' Take:

• Alok Hisarwala and Rajesh Kasturirangan explain that the list of everyday cruelty towards animals in India is endless, but apart from a handful of animal rights activists, we never see any great outrage from members of civil society.

• The argument here is that only the wealthy can afford to pay attention to animal rights while the poor are fighting for their own existence. How can we help make the case for animal welfare? 

• Find out how to help animals

The term “leftist” means different things to different people. But broadly it connotes a set of features that transcend time and place under a wider umbrella of progressive politics.

This term would include a keen eye for injustice, and solidarity with those who suffer from it; an understanding of capitalist societies and their hierarchies, insight into how the capitalist system accommodates and subverts traditional social systems, and political mobilisation around alternatives to such systems that cause injustice.

The scope of leftist politics has widened over the decades. In 19th century Europe, leftists might have focused on the newly formed class structures of bourgeois society and the need for class struggle. In 20th century India, the struggles of the marginalised–Dalits, Adivasis, and farmers–were seen as the most important leftist concern.

Traditionally, the Left was hostile to the non-human environment, sometimes with adverse consequences. Mao’s four pests campaign in the fifties, in China, is an egregious example.

Read the full article about animal rights by Alok Hisarwala and Rajesh Kasturirangan at India Development Review.