A demonstration by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) activists in Bhopal, India, descended into chaos Monday as the group urged Muslims to “go vegan” for Eid al-Adha this October.
One policeman was injured and at least one female PETA member was injured by angry protesters and later whisked away by Bhopal police, the Times of India reported.
A blog post on the U.K. PETA website said the mob, consisting mostly of men, had waited at the the legendary Taj-ul-Masajid mosque in anticipation of the event. PETA demonstrators reportedly held a placard reading, “Make Eid Happy for All. Try Vegan.”
“One staffer sustained severe facial injuries and other wounds and remains hospitalized,” the post said. “Another staffer’s pants were ripped as the mob tried to tear at her clothes.”
India Today reports that police cited three PETA activists under section 295 A — outraging religious feelings — Inspector General of Police Yogesh Choudhary said.
PETA said the demonstration was led by a staffer wearing a dress adorned with lettuce leaves, and was organized as a plea to Eid observers “to choose non-violent ways to give alms to the poor, such as gifts of grains, fruit, clothing or money — instead of paying to have goats slaughtered during the Bakra Eid religious commemoration of Abraham’s offering of his son to God.”
PETA India CEO Poorva Joshipura said in a statement: “PETA organizes peaceful animal protection awareness programs for Christmas, Easter, Diwali, Janmashtami and other holidays as well as Eid … it is shameful that in working to stop violence, our volunteers were made to suffer violence.”
Protestor Naved Khan told the Times of India: “We are offended by this move of PETA. It is an insensible move which should have been stopped by the district administration, before it took place. This is a direct attack on our religious beliefs.”