PETITION TARGET: India’s Ministry of Tourism and Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change
Elephants with seemingly painful abscesses, heavy chains around their necks and feet, and who are being forced to haul tourists for “entertainment” — those are just some of the horrific conditions revealed in Lady Freethinker’s latest investigation into elephant camps in India.
An LFT investigator visited six elephant camps and tourist spots in the country and witnessed animal suffering at each one, including elephants with abscesses or painful collections of pus, and animals chained so tightly that they couldn’t take a step in either direction.
LFT’s investigator witnessed chains used at each site, including at Sakrebyle Elephant Camp and Pooram – Kodungallur Sree Kurunba Bagavathi Temple festival, where the heavy chains on the animals’ backs could be heard clanging from a distance when the elephants walked.
At Harangi Elephant Camp & Tree Park, the investigator documented elephants chained by their ankles being forced to pose with tourists for photos.
The animals also were forcibly used for photo ops at Phansoli Elephant Camp, where the investigator observed a handler smacking an elephant in the face with the wooden handle of a bullhook. Elephants showed signs of zoochosis – or psychological distress present in animals in captivity – including a female elephant who bounced her head up and down for nearly 30 minutes.
LFT documented elephants with apparent deep scars around their ankles at several sites, which is commonly associated with past chaining injuries, according to an elephant expert at Save the Asian Elephants who examined the photos.
Elephants are incredible animals who often stay with their families for life, communicate, and can spot storms that are over 150 miles away.
Abusing and exploiting them for human “amusement,” profits or any other reason is unacceptable.
Please sign and share our petition today urging officials in India to ban human-elephant interactions at tourist venues. Remember to never support any place that exploits and abuses animals for “entertainment.”
Then read about the full investigation here.