PETA writes letter to Sima Taparia after complaints about ‘use of animals’ on Indian Matchmaking season 2

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India has written a letter to Sima Taparia and urged her to avoid using elephants and horses for the future seasons of Indian Matchmaking. PETA has said that it has received many complaints after the second season of the Netflix show aired. (Also read: Indian Matchmaking’s Aparna Shewakramani says she’s more progressive than Sima Taparia)

Addressing Sima as ‘Sima auntie’, PETA India’s senior media and celebrity projects coordinator Monica Chopra wrote, “I am writing on behalf of PETA India, and our over two million members and supporters, to ask that you please ensure your show adjusts a little to modern times by ensuring a policy against the use of animals in any future series of Indian Matchmaking. PETA India has been inundated with complaints by people who otherwise love the show, but were upset by the use of animals in it like the elephant and horse in season two of the series. While human participants of the show are there by choice, elephants, horses or other animals used as wedding props would not be.”

The letter further said that animals are ‘not a good match’ for wedding festivities because of the loud music, crowds and firecrackers, adding that often mahouts force elephants to participate in activities that are meaningless to them (wedding processions) by breaking them mentally and controlling them physically. It added, they’re separated from their mothers and family, chained in place when not in use, and jabbed with ankuses—heavy batons with a sharp metal hook on the end—and they are constantly threatened with pain and violence to keep them afraid and compliant.

The letter also elaborated on the atrocities that animals often face when used for wedding processions. “If the aim of Indian Matchmaking is to offer viewers an inside look at arranged marriages in the modern era, we hope you agree the show must also reflect the changing times by having a no-animals policy. May we please hear from you?” the letter concluded.

Sima Taparia secured a nomination at the 73rd Emmy Awards under the ‘Outstanding Unstructured Reality Program’ category for the first season of Indian Matchmaking. The second season of the show premiered on Netflix on earlier this month and featured some old clients of Sima as well as some new clients as she helped them meet their potential spouses.

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