The Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF) and Chief Wildlife Warden Sanjay Kumar Srivastava has informed the Madras High Court that it is not advisable to shift a three-month-old female elephant calf that strayed away from its herd from Sathyamangalam Tiger Reserve in Erode district on September 27 to a zoo, as desired by an animal rights activist.
In a status report filed before a Bench of Justices M. Sathyanarayanan and N. Seshasayee, which was seized of a public interest litigation petition filed by the activist S. Muralidharan, he said elephant calves depended on their mother’s milk up to three years of age. Hence, it would be prudent to make sincere attempts to get the calf reunited with a herd.
According to the report filed through Additional Government Pleader S. Vijay Prashanth, the calf was sighted alone for the first time near the Kanakunthur village area of the Sathyamangalam range on September 27. Immediately, she was taken back to the forest and efforts were taken in Guthiyalathur of Kanakunthur beat to get the animal reunited with her mother.
The same calf was sighted outside the Dhimbam forest area on October 2 during patrolling of the forest front-line staff of the Hasanur range. Then, the animal was found alone with some wounds on its left fore limb and right hind limb, besides swelling on its legs. It was taken to the forest veterinary centre at Karachikorai and provided treatment.
The calf was kept in the centre till October 8 and provided with milk (lactogen), glucose and medicines to improve its condition.