After drafting the rules to prohibit the testing of cosmetics in India, now the Union health ministry has framed draft rules to amend the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules 1945 to ban the import of cosmetics tested on animals abroad.
Accordingly, a new rule (135-B) will be inserted after Rule 135-A under the Drugs and Cosmetic Rules, 1945. “Import of cosmetics tested on animals prohibited—No cosmetic tested on animals shall be imported,” said the draft rule that is being issued by the ministry for seeking comments and responses from the stakeholders.
The rule has been framed after consultation with the Drugs Technical Advisory Board (DTAB) and if implemented after the mandatory 45-days, it will make India the first country in South Asia to do so.
The move has been welcomed by NGO groups like Humane Society International/India (HIS) working against cruelty against animals. “We are delighted to see many months of HSI/India campaigning pay off with introduction of this import ban proposal, and we thank the health ministry for acting so swiftly on behalf of animals. With a ban on cosmetics animal testing already in place in India, it is now time to ensure that cosmetics tested with cruelty in other countries cannot be imported in India’s shops,” said HSI managing director and the member of Animal Welfare Board of India N G Jayasimha.
HSI has been leading a Be Cruelty Free campaign for some time now to press for the ban. Over the past few months, more than 30 members of Parliament led by People for Animals chairperson Maneka Sanjay Gandhi, legislative assemblies and legislative councils have written to the health ministry in support of HSI/India’s Be Cruelty-Free campaign urging this ban.
The Ministry had already drafted amendment to the D&C Rules and announced it a few months ago to prohibit the testing of cosmetics on animals after the DTAB approved the moves last year. However, the final notification is yet to come to put the ban in force.