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Elephant weeps during Rescue

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#1 Hum

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Posted 09 July 2014 - 02:00

Raju cried as he was freed from 50 years of cruelty; he was delivered to freedom to the Elephant Conservation and Care Centre at Mathura, India.

Under the cover of darkness, a team from London-based Wildlife S.O.S rescued an elephant that had been abused for 50 years in India and transported it 350 miles to an elephant sanctuary where it walked free for the first time on July 4th.

Raju, believed to have been poached from his mother as a baby, was beaten and left bleeding from painful spiked leg shackles by an abusive owner who had the elephant beg for handouts and survive by eating plastic and paper for food.

The owner also tore out hair from Raju’s tail to sell as good luck charms, Wildlife S.O.S. founder Kartick Satyanarayan told the U.K. MailOnline.

A year after learning of Raju’s plight, Wildlife S.O.S. last week led a team of 10 veterinarians and wildlife officials, 20 forestry department officers and six policemen, and seized the abused elephant from the Uttar Pradesh area of India, after receiving a court order.

“The team [was] astounded to see tears roll down his face during the rescue,” Pooja Binepal, a spokesman for Wildlife S.O.S., told the MailOnline. “It was so incredibly emotional for all of us. We knew in our hearts he realized he was being freed.

“Elephants are not only majestic, but they are highly intelligent animals, who have been proven to have feelings of grief, so we can only imagine what torture half a century has been like for him.

“Until we stepped in he’d never known what it is like to walk free of his shackles–it’s a truly pitiful case. But today he knows what freedom is and he will learn what kindness feels like and what it’s like to not suffer any more.”

The owner, reported by The Times of India to be a drug addict, and the elephant’s handler attempted to thwart the rescue, blocking the road, shouting commands to Raju to try to provoke the animal into violence, and adding more chains around the animal’s legs.

But the rescue team stood its ground, and seized the animal. It was at this point that tears began rolling down Raju’s face. Raju, despite each painful step as the spikes cut into his flesh, calmly climbed into the truck, as if knowing he was being rescued.

Raju was taken to the charity’s Elephant Conservation and Care Centre at Mathura where he was able to walk free from cruelty for the first time in 50 years.

“Incredibly he stepped out of his truck and took his first step to freedom at one minute past midnight on July 4th, which felt so extraordinarily fitting,” Satyanarayan told MailOnline.

The rescue team had waited until getting the abused elephant to the sanctuary to remove its shackles. Wildlife vet Dr. Yaduraj Khadpekar began doing so immediately.

“It took him [Khadpekar] and two handlers 45 minutes to liberate him as they’d been wound round his legs to prevent their removal and to cause pain if anyone tried to take them off,” Satyanarayan told MailOnline.

“We all had tears in our eyes as the last rope which held the final spike was cut and Raju took his first steps of freedom.

“The entire team [was] exhausted, but incredibly elated as he has suffered such unthinkable abuse and trauma for so, so long. He’d been beaten so badly, his spirit is broken.” :cry:

Since his arrival, Raju has received medical attention, been given proper baths and food, and is well along in the rehabilitation process. Wildlife S.O.S. has launched a campaign to raise $17,000 to help Raju begin his new life in a new enclosure, which will allow him to roam free with other elephants.

Satyanarayan said Raju is “tasting freedom for the first time in his life, and he’ll spend the rest of his life in a safe compound living out his days in dignity, free from suffering and pain.”

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#2 +warwagon

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Posted 09 July 2014 - 02:08

Well they do have an 11lb brain in comparison to our 3.3 lb brain.



#3 Earthworm Jimmy

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Posted 09 July 2014 - 02:20

Emotional. 

 

Considering Elephants are one of the more smart creatures with incredible memory and long age, I can only imagine what it was like to live like that for 50!!!!    years.

I hope the animal will adapt to new life and enjoy it, and not carry emotional trauma around with it, causing problems.   



#4 +_Alexander

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Posted 09 July 2014 - 02:51

Elephants are usually killed so you could get neat trinkets made from their tusks AFAIK.

#5 OP Hum

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Posted 09 July 2014 - 09:42

Raju, believed to have been poached from his mother as a baby, was beaten and left bleeding from painful spiked leg shackles by an abusive owner who had the elephant beg for handouts and survive by eating plastic and paper for food.

 

This owner is a perfect canidate to send on a one-way trip to Mars -- he doesn't deserve to be on Earth.



#6 mastercoms

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Posted 09 July 2014 - 09:52

This owner is a perfect canidate to send on a one-way trip to Mars -- he doesn't deserve to be on Earth.

Not even that. He should be sent out further than Voyager 1.



#7 +macoman

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Posted 09 July 2014 - 10:02

The owner need to suffer the same, no food and chained in a corner for the rest of his miserable life.

#8 madd-hatter

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Posted 09 July 2014 - 20:56

I'm quite surprised to hear that elephants live over 50 years. Now I read they can live up to and beyond 70 years naturally. Wow.



#9 goodbytes

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Posted 09 July 2014 - 21:21

This owner is a perfect canidate to send on a one-way trip to Mars -- he doesn't deserve to be on Earth.

 

Honestly, the day the human race is destroyed can't come soon enough... what a vile bunch of creatures we are, supposed to be smartest living being on this planet yet the stuff that we read about every day tells a different story.. i just can't get my head round the way of thinking.. the stuff i'm reading and seeing on a daily basis (animal cruelty, random acts of abuse on children and elderly, etc..) is actually making me fear death less and less because not being on this planet doesn't seem like such a bad thing.



#10 bonalste

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Posted 10 July 2014 - 13:26

Honestly, the day the human race is destroyed can't come soon enough... what a vile bunch of creatures we are, supposed to be smartest living being on this planet yet the stuff that we read about every day tells a different story.. i just can't get my head round the way of thinking.. the stuff i'm reading and seeing on a daily basis (animal cruelty, random acts of abuse on children and elderly, etc..) is actually making me fear death less and less because not being on this planet doesn't seem like such a bad thing.


I know that our large brains mean that we are capable of understanding morality (some don't, I know) but I don't think you should point the finger at people. Nature is as cruel as hell. Ants that burrow into the brains of animals and take control of them like zombies, wasps that inject their young into insects which then eat them from the inside-out. Wolf packs that chase big-game until they're too worn out to put up a struggle, before tearing them apart alive... I'm sure that if animals were clever enough to have us in cages, they would. Nature is awful, equally as much as human beings.

#11 greenwizard88

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Posted 10 July 2014 - 15:29

This is a sad story. Just sad. There's not much more to say. I hope that the elephant is okay, and doesn't end up a bully.