Bengaluru

‘Our Sidda is not like any other wild elephant’

Prayers are made daily at the small village temple for the recovery of the elephant that has become their companion.  

Avarehalli: Even before it came to the attention of the media, Sidda was a routine guest - often uninvited - at Avarehalli, on the banks of the reservoir. But now, the nondescript village comprising a few row houses, one school and a temple has become the centre of attention.

Three months ago, Sidda had first come to the farms surrounding the village, and the veritable buffet of crops has seen it return often.

Shilpa Mallanna, a resident of Avarehalli, has lost around one acre of maize crop after Sidda took a liking. Other residents said that Sidda had once blocked the only entry route to the village for an hour.

Despite all this, they only feel affect for the jumbo. They provide food and water to the recumbent elephant.

Attempting to explain this affection, Ms. Shilpa says, “We do not begrudge Sidda for feasting on our crops. It is innocent and naive. What do wild elephants know about cultivated crops or loans taken to raise them? It just sees food and eats it. We have grown fond of the animal as we noticed that it never attempted to harm anyone in the village. Our Sidda is not like any other wild elephant. Once, a villager was on his bike when Sidda appeared right next to him. It did not do anything to him.”

Prayers are made daily at the small village temple for the recovery of the elephant that has become their companion. “We do not want it to die in our village,” said a villager.

Timeline

August 30: Sidda, a 35-year-old male elephant, falls into a ditch near Dodderi (outskirts of Bengaluru) while being chased by villagers. Suffers injuries to its fore leg and shoulder

August 31: The tusker is tranquilised and treated for the injuries. Escorted to Savandurga Reserve Forest

September 11: Seen on the banks of Manchanabele reservoir. It had sought water to alleviate the pain in its leg

October 26: Condition deteriorates and the animal collapses around 100 metres from the bank

October 31: Helped onto its feet with a crane. But legs had become numb. It could not stand up on its own


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Printable version | Nov 28, 2021 9:15:48 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/bangalore/%E2%80%98Our-Sidda-is-not-like-any-other-wild-elephant%E2%80%99/article16438246.ece

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