Chinese Theme Park Faces Backlash for Forcing a Pig to Bungee Jump on the Inaugural Day

IANS

A Chinese theme park has triggered a wave of outrage on social media after it forced a pig to bungee jump off a 68-metre high tower, it was reported on Monday.

The incident took place on January 18 at the Meixin Red Wine Town theme park in the sprawling Chinese municipality of Chongqing, the BBC said in a report.

The publicity event, which organisers called the golden pig bungee jump, was held to celebrate the opening of the theme park's bungee attraction.

The pig, which according to local reports weighed 75 kg, is seen being pushed off the tower with a purple cape tied around its shoulders. In one video of the incident, what sound like pig squeals can be heard.

What happens to the pig afterwards is not shown, though many local media reports said that it was eventually sent to a slaughterhouse.

Though a handful of people defended the incident on social media, saying it wasn't any different to "killing a pig for food", the majority of users condemned the company's actions.

"This is a super vulgar marketing tactic," said one commenter, while another said: "Killing animals for consumption and treating them cruelly for entertainment are two different things... There is no need to torture them like this."

Animal protection organisation Peta condemned the incident, calling it "animal cruelty at its worst".

"Pigs experience pain and fear in the same ways that we do, and this disgusting PR stunt should be illegal," Jason Baker, Peta senior vice-president of international campaigns, told BBC News.

The theme park has since put out a statement, saying that it accepted the "criticism" it had received.

"We sincerely accept netizens' criticism and advice and apologise to the public," it said.

"We will improve (our) marketing of the tourist site, to provide tourists with better services."