Video Credit: AsiaWire
This footage shows an ailing elephant dying by the roadside after it was forced to stand through a full wedding despite having fainted and was then packed into a stuffy lorry for a six-hour journey to another function.
The incident took place when the female captive elephant fell ill while being transported to the city of Tiruchirappalli in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu in the back of a lorry.
The owner, N. Baskar, had accepted two bookings for Gulabi the elephant for that day, and had just finished a wedding in Pollachi when they were returning to Tiruchirappalli for another function.
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However, the 59-year-old elephant collapsed and slowly died on the roadside.
Meanwhile, Baskar has been accused of ignoring the animal’s ailing condition and showing disregard for its age and capabilities.
A senior forest department official also said that Baskar ignored their warnings not to take the elephant on such a long trip.
The spokesperson added that the elephant had previously fainted on its way to the wedding in Pollachi, saying: “For an elephant of this age, rest is mandatory, but it was made to travel in [a] truck to Pollachi for about six hours.
“Unable to bear the heat, Gulabi fainted in the truck despite being administered intravenous fluids.
“After facing all this, the elephant was made to stand until the wedding concluded.”
According to local media, Baskar obtained the required paperwork from the authorities in Chennai, but failed to inform forest officials in Pollachi or Tiruchirappalli before transporting the elephant.
Meanwhile, local activists have called for the elephant owner to be punished for cruelly overworking the ageing animal.
It is unclear whether the police are investigating the claims.