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Paul McCartney asks India's prime minister to declare a national Vegetarian Day

January 4, 2011 |  3:14 pm

Macca NEW DELHI — Outspoken vegetarian Paul McCartney is urging India to declare a national Vegetarian Day to celebrate meat-free living and compassion toward animals.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals said McCartney sent a letter to Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh saying such a day could save animals while helping to protect both the environment and people's health.

McCartney's letter said "it would be a celebration of life."

The United Nations food agency in 2003 estimated that 42% of India's 1.2 billion people are vegetarian, mostly because of financial and religious concerns. Strict Hindus and Jains do not eat meat.

Singh's office could not immediately confirm receipt of McCartney's letter Tuesday.

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-- Associated Press

Photo: McCartney in 2001. Credit: Jan Bauer / Associated Press

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