Animal Rights' Group alleges torture of captive jumbos

Modi asked to intervene in rising jumbo deaths in Kerala
news News Monday, January 11, 2016 - 18:53

Thrissur-based Animal rights group -Heritage Animal Task Force- on Monday sought PM Modi’s intervention in the alleged torture and death of captive jumbos by festival organizers in Kerala.

The group sent a letter to the Prime Minister - who is also the Chairman of the National Board for Wildlife- requesting a high level inquiry into the issue.

"During 2015, a total of 11 captive elephants died due to torture and neglect near festival places in the state," the letter alleges.

As many as 383 elephants ran amok in 3057 incidents in 14 districts of Kerala in 2015 said the letter which was released to the media on Monday.

"A total of 14 persons were killed by captive elephants last year in the state. Of these, 9 were mahouts and others include a veterinarian, an elephant owner, a car-driver, a vegetable vendor and an ex-service man," the letter said.

However, the Kerala government had not initiated any comprehensive inquiry into these incidents, it said.

The group has asked for a high-level inquiry into such deaths, adding the festival organizers who parade musth-affected jumbos were responsible for such casualties.

"The Kerala Government remains a mute spectator even after the Supreme Court’s order for strict implementation of Elephant Parade Rules with effect from 18th August 2015," it said.

Though the state government had constituted a six-member committee to inquire into killing of the veterinarian in Pathanamthitta district by a captive jumbo, the panel failed to convene any further meetings, the letter added.

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