Thirty-four of 36 elephants - 32 temple elephants and four math animals - enlisted for the 48-day annual rejuvenation camp by the Hindu and Religious and Charitable Endowments (HR&CE) Department near Mettuppalayam arrived on Sunday evening.
Talking to The Hindu, HR & CE Commissioner P. Dhanapal said 34 elephants reported at the weigh bridge for a check-up in the forenoon. A panel of veterinarians examined the pachyderms. The animals were given food and supplements to overcome tiredness.
Based on the age and weight of each elephant, veterinarians prepared a food chart, providing specific quantity of food, fodder and supplements to each animal.
Of the more than 45 elephants belonging to temples and maths, only 37 were initially identified. Of the 36 animals identified, Sundaravalli of Azhagiya Nambirayar Thirukkoil – Thirukurungadi in Tirunelveli resisted boarding the truck. Rukku (23) of Arunachaleswarar Temple in Tiruvannamalai would reach the camp only on Wednesday, as it is being retained for Karthigai Deepam festivities.
Special guest for the camp this year would be Prakruthi (8) of Saneeswarar Temple in Thirunallar coming to the camp at the request of the Puducherry government. As the elephant was under observation, it would be joining the camp on Tuesday .
Among the 36 animals, one is from Vellore region, two are from Tiruvannamalai region, six from Mayiladuthurai region, three from Tiruchi region, four from Madurai region, six from Sivaganga region, two from Coimbatore region and 12 from Tirunelveli region.
Mahouts and cavadis would go through an orientation on elephant psychology, behavioural pattern and basic medications.
To prevent entry of wild elephants, the camp site has been provided with solar fencing besides four watch towers, as the camp site is close to reserve forest.