HC notice to government on ill-treatment of elephant by religious institution

High Court of Karnataka was informed that Forest Department had, on two occasions, taken custody of the elephant following complaints of ill-treatment.   | Photo Credit: The Hindu

The High Court of Karnataka on Tuesday ordered issue of notice to the State government on a PIL petition seeking direction for urgent medical treatment, rescue, and rehabilitation of a 29-year-old elephant, which was given to a religious institution about 27 years ago.

A Division Bench, comprising acting Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Sachin Shankar Magadum, passed the order on the petition filed by People for Animals, Mysuru.

It has been pointed out in the petition that the elephant, Lakshmi, was born as a Karnataka Forest Camp calf in 1992 and when she was 18 months, her custody was handed over to the Urgradhi Gavimath Mahasamsthan Uravakonda, Anantapur district, Andhra Pradesh, through an ownership certificate issued in March 1994.

However, the elephant was retained at the Sri Kadasiddeshwara Mutt situated at Nonavinakere in Tumakuru district, which is a branch of the A.P.-based mutt, the petitioner said, while alleging that the elephant was regularly beaten, paraded on roads, and used for begging across Tumakuru, besides renting the animal to be used for private processions and festivals.

Pointing out that the Forest Department, on two occasions earlier, had taken custody of the elephant on complaints of ill treatment, before returning it to the mutt later, the petitioner has complained that recently the elephant was forced to walk more than 200 kilometres to Andhra Pradesh.

The petitioner has sought a direction to the Forest Department to immediate take custody of the elephant and cancel the ownership certificate given to the mutt.

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Printable version | Nov 28, 2021 4:40:27 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/hc-notice-to-govt-on-plea-complaining-ill-treatment-of-elephant-by-branch-of-andhra-pradesh-mutt/article36599390.ece

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