Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said that stern action would be taken against those responsible for killing a wild elephant in Kerala by feeding it with pineapple with crackers. The minister revealed that the Centre had taken a serious note of the incident and had sought complete report on it.
Meanwhile, Kerala’s Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said that a preliminary investigation has been initiated and Pallakad police has been directed to take stringent action against those involved. A wildlife crime investigation team from Kozhikode will also assist the team in further investigations.
On May 27, an elephant had died in Kerala’s Silent Valley Forest a week after it was severely injured after eating a pineapple that was filled with crackers. The post mortem report reveals the animal had a broken jaw and had been pregnant. The elephant died at Velliyar River after efforts by forest personnel to bring it to the river bank using two other trained elephants failed.
The tragic incident came to light after a forest officer named Mohan Krishnan’s emotional facebook post narrating the death of the elephant went viral. Krishnan, who was assigned to rescue the elephant back to the shore, wrote, “When we saw her she was standing in the river, with her head dipped in the water. She had a sixth sense that she was going to die. She took the Jalasamadhi in the river in a standing position,”
Forest officials reveal investigation into such cases is not easy. “It is very difficult to gather information in such incidents. Locating the place where they meet with such fate is not easy as the herd of wild elephants travels several kilometers a day.”
The news sparked massive outrage on social media with many angry netizens demanding severe punishment against those responsible. The incident seems to be a watershed moment in India’s animal rights history, but whether this will translate into action remains to be seen.
NewsCaravan Digital Desk report