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When an elephant says no

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Waiting for the wild one Photo: M.K. Ananth

He was first named Encounter and later Madukkarai Maharaj. The 18-year-old tusker has been roaming around Madukkarai for the last few months. If he had confined himself to the forest area, things would have been fine. However, the Maharaj became an unwelcome guest at nearby farms, where he happily grazed on the produce. Finally, the Forest Department decided to tranquilise and shift him to the elephant camp at Varakaliyar near Topslip. It was a week-long effort and would not have been possible without Kaleem, Sujay and Paari, the three jumbos who helped get the loner into the truck. At Varakaliyar, Maharaj will be tamed and become a kumki like those who helped capture him.

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