On June 3 2020, the former BJP minister and an animal rights activist, Maneka Gandhi mocked the Communist Party led-Kerala Government for the heinous act against a pregnant elephant in Mallapuram, Kerala.
The heart-wrenching visuals of the elephant taking its last breaths were first posted by a forest officer in the area. Since then, these visuals have clustered the web. Various celebrities and activists have voiced their opinions with inspiring social media posts and animal rights awareness write-ups.
Certain sections of the media reported that the perpetrators intentionally fed a pineapple stuffed with fireworks to the elephant. Whereas, investigations have revealed that the villagers use this method to capture and kill wild boars and other wild animals. It was Mohana Krishnan, a forest department section officer who posted insights of the incident on Facebook. Yet, in the posts, he did not mention that the pineapple lined with explosives were fed to the innocent animal deliberately.
According to the forest officials, the crackers burst inside her mouth, wounding her mouth and tongue. After more than 2 weeks of misery and pain, the elephant went searching for water. The helpless pachyderm immersed her trunk inside the water and succumbed to death along with her baby.
“It’s a murder“, says Maneka Gandhi
In an interview, Maneka Gandhi mocked the State Government of Kerala for being ignorant about animal-cruelty and called it a “murder”. Earlier, the influential activist-leader had mentioned the grave situation at Mallapuram in the micro-blogging site as well. She tweeted:
“Mallapuram is known for its intense criminal activity especially with regards to animals. The officials have never taken an action against a single poacher or wildlife killer so they keep doing it. I can only suggest that you call/email and ask for action,”.
Additionally, she attached a document about the seriousness of elephant-harassment in the State. She said that temple owners have injured, starved and killed almost 600 elephants till date. There are notable instances where private owners purposely drown or feed gangrene to elephants by putting rusted nails on them. She mentions her regular appeals to the department, who have remained ignorant till date.
Failure of the State Government to take action
In the interview, she also says:
“It’s a complete failure of Kerala government because the state government has given them permission to make such small bombs 3 months back to kill wild pigs. It’s evident that there’s a factory in Mallapuram where people are stuffing crackers in fruits, they are putting these bombs at different corners in farms in Mallapuram and let me tell you elephants go in farms, not wild pigs.”
Notably, she did not miss out on taunting Mr. Rahul Gandhi for not fulfilling his obligations to the area under his authority.
“Various other problems regarding animal cruelty are kept hidden in the nooks and corners of the State. But the Court has remained quiet about it. More than 11000 elephants have died till date and this incident is the most remorseful addition to the number”, Maneka Gandhi exclaimed.
Meanwhile, the Forest Officials have lodged an FIR against the perpetrators of the crime under the specific sections of Wild Life Protection Act over the incident.