Legendary musician and longtime vegetarian Sir Paul McCartney has sent a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh urging him to declare 12 January, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India’s anniversary, as a meat-free day to celebrate kindness to animals. PETA India suggests the national meat-free day could be called Shakahar Jayanti, not only because it’s the group’s birthday but also because India is considered the birthplace of vegetarianism.

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Paul McCartney

“It would be a celebration of life, all life”, writes McCartney, who has often spoken of his fondness for India. McCartney, who has said, “If slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be vegetarian”, also narrates a hard-hitting video exposé about animals killed for food called “Glass Walls”. Writes McCartney about the video, “Were it shown in every school, the next generation would grow up vegetarian, I have no doubt”.

The text of Sir Paul McCartney’s letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is below.

Dear Dr Prime Minister,

India has held a very special place in my heart since my first visit to your country many years ago.

I also respect the work done by PETA India, which in the coming year will celebrate 11 years of bringing relief to working animals, promoting the sterilisation and homing of street dogs and championing alternatives to the use of animals for food, clothing, experimentation and entertainment.

This year, I narrated a shocking exposé of the meat industry titled “Glass Walls”. The video takes the viewer behind the closed doors of slaughterhouses, where millions of cattle, chickens, pigs and other animals meet a frightening, bloody end. What you see on the screen goes against our cherished ideals of peace and non-violence and makes a mockery of ahimsa, India’s wonderful core doctrine. Now PETA India is releasing “Glass Walls” in your country. I hope you will take a few minutes to watch it and recommend it to others. Were it to be shown in every school, I have no doubt that the next generation would fully embrace vegetarianism.

I have one more thing to most respectfully ask you. Would you please think about declaring one day every year – perhaps January 12, the anniversary of PETA India’s founding – a day to celebrate vegetarianism and compassion towards animals? Such a declaration would save countless animals, reduce the environmental devastation caused by the meat industry and help participants clear their arteries and their consciences. It would be a celebration of life – all life.

I look forward to returning to India. Thank you for your consideration.

Yours sincerely,

Paul McCartney

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