First country in South Asia to end cosmetics cruelty


HSI’s global Be Cruelty-Free campaign is working to end cosmetics animal testing—forever. iStock

NEW DELHI (June 28, 2013) — India has banned animal testing for cosmetics following intense public campaigning and legislative advocacy by Humane Society International’s Be Cruelty-Free India campaign<>, including support from Indian Members of Parliament and State Assemblies.

The Bureau of Indian Standards has today approved the removal of any mention of animal tests from the country’s cosmetics standard. The use of modern non-animal alternative tests also becomes mandatory, replacing invasive tests on animals. This means that any manufacturer interested in testing new cosmetic ingredients or finished products must first seek approval from India’s Central Drug Standards Control Organisation. A manufacturer will be given approval to test only after complying with the BIS non-animal standards.

Alokparna Sengupta, Humane Society International/India’s Be Cruelty-Free campaign manager, said: “This is a major victory for countless animals who will no longer be made to suffer, and it is a proud moment for India as it becomes the first country in South Asia to end cosmetics cruelty. We thank the thousands of Indian consumers, politicians and celebrities who joined with Humane Society International to achieve this historic ban.”

Member of Parliament Baijayant ‘Jay’ Panda said: “This is a great day for India and for the thousands of animals who will no longer suffer, yet more work must be done. Our government must go a step further by banning cosmetics products that are tested on animals abroad and then imported and sold here in India. Only then will India demonstrate its commitment to compassion and modern, non-animal research methods and truly be cruelty free.”

Israel and the 27 countries that make up the European Union have implemented both testing and sales bans to bring an end to cosmetics animal suffering in their respective jurisdictions, and HSI is leading the campaign to persuade India to become the next fully cruelty-free cosmetics zone. A sales ban will prevent companies from outsourcing testing to third countries and importing animal-tested beauty products back into India for sale.

HSI/India extends special thanks and recognition to Smt. Maneka Gandhi, Nanditha Krishna, C.P.R. Environmental Education Centre, Chinny Krishna, Blue Cross of India, MPs Baijayant ‘Jay’ Panda, Suresh Kumar Shetkar, MLAs Ramalinga Reddy and Debasree Roy, as well as many other MLCs across the country who spoke out against animal testing for cosmetics.

HSI’s Be Cruelty-Free campaign is working to achieve similar victories across Oceania, East Asia, Brazil, Russia and beyond.

To show your support for ending the sale of animal tested cosmetics in India, sign a Be Cruelty-Free pledge:

Media contact: Alokparna Sengupta:

Humane Society International/India and its partner organizations together constitute one of the world’s largest animal protection organizations. For more than 20 years, HSI has been working for the protection of all animals through the use of science, advocacy, education and hands on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty worldwide.

In India, Be Cruelty-Free has partnered with Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organisations, C.P.R.Environmental Education Centre and Blue Cross of India.