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Actress Nikita Ghag conferred the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke Award for animal rights advocacy

Whether you want to save the tigers in India, elephants in Africa, sharks in California, whales in Japan or the dogs and cats in your own streets, Nikita Ghag of DAWA is one woman who will stand up for them. An actress by profession, Nikita Ghag is an outspoken advocate for animal rights and has been spreading the word on how it is possible to be fashion-forward without harming animals.

Ghag believes in cruelty-free living and spreads awareness on the same. For her activism and her advocacy of adopting pets besides rescuing and rehabilitating them with her “Kill The Fear – Let Animals Near” initiative to sensitize school children to animal adoptions, Ghag has been awarded the prestigious Dadasaheb Phalke Award.

“Animal safety directly affects human health and welfare. The pandemic is the time we need to relive to understand how animals feel when they are locked up in zoos or tied up in chains. Rescuing and adopting pets brings into our lives some extra-special moments as you and the rescue have both found each other,” she reasons.

A vocal proponent for animal rights, Ghag has appealed to politicians to pass legislation to improve the conditions of millions of animals.

“I don’t eat meat because it is unhealthy. I also don’t eat meat because what is on your plate is the product of a violent and inhumane industry.”

Ghag believes that her work has just begun. “We are still a long way away from building a harmonious relationship between humanity and the animal world. We humans should understand that our future totally rests on protecting biodiversity, conservation of forests and oceans, raising awareness of climate change – in respecting Earth. It is time we shift our sense to see where the world is actually going,” she reasons.

What is the need of the hour? Social punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul, when we look the other way,” Ghag quotes Martin Luther King. “Treat animals as living beings. That is what they are. If we cannot adopt or rescue, lt is at least stop the cruelty in our own small way. That is a step towards saving the Earth for our own children.”