Annual elephant rejuvenation camp from next week

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Elephant
Chennai, Dec 14: The Tamil Nadu government today announced that its annual elephant rejuvenation camp, a pet initiative of Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa, will be held for 48 days starting next week in which 43 pachyderms will be treated.

Jayalalithaa has allocated Rs 78 lakh for this year's exercise, which will be held at the Bhavani river bed in Coimbatore, a release from Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department here said.

The initiative, started in 2003, following complaints that the jumbos were not treated properly in temples and mutts, involves providing the elephants a combination of rest, nutritious food and medical treatment, besides training the mahouts to deal with the gentle giants with compassion.

The release said that the camps were not held from 2006-11 during the DMK regime, and the idea was re-initiated after Jayalalithaa took over in 2011. This year, a total of 43 jumbos belonging to temples and mutts will be part of the special camp commencing from December 19.

Further, the Chief Minister has directed that elephants unwilling to be moved from their existing locations or those unable to do so on health grounds, be offered the same facilities at their original locations, it added.

PTI

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