Celina Jaitly fights for elephant 'Sunder'

Wednesday, 13 August 2014 - 1:25pm IST | Place: Mumbai | Agency: dna webdesk

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Celina Jaitly has filed a police complaint against the elephant's mahout and MLA Vinay Kare. 

Celina Jaitly recently took to Twitter urging her fans to help #FreeSunder – the captive elephant held in Kolhapur by Maharashtra Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) Vinay Kore. 

Now Celina, who is an ambassador for the United Nations' Free & Equal campaign, has approached Colaba police station to act against Sunder's mahout and Kore after Sunder was found suffering from a massive wound on his leg. Senior Inspector Rameshwar Supley acknowledged the complaint from Jaitly. 

Meanwhile, a complaint against Kore was filed on Monday by People for Animals' Naresh Kadyan in Delhi after he learned about Sunder's wound.

"Sunder is a young kid who has not seen anything but loneliness, cruelty and pain", says Jaitly. "PETA is doing everything possible to rescue Sunder from his misery. It's high time for Sunder's abusers to be brought to justice, and I really hope that the Forest Department and authorities move Sunder as soon as possible before he is hurt again. We will do everything it takes to free this child!"

From a blog update on PETA India, we get to learn more about the issue. 

During a recent veterinary inspection by an elephant expert, 14-year-old elephant Sunder was found with what the health examination report calls a "massive wound … as a result of constant tying with heavy chains". The expert's report also states that Sunder should be moved from Kolhapur to an elephant-care centre in Bangalore "on an emergency basis" as directed by the Bombay High Court. The court had ordered the Maharashtra Forest Department to move Sunder to the centre before the monsoon season. 

But Kore – who is not the legal owner of Sunder and has kept him on his property illegally – has attempted to block the order by filing an appeal with the Supreme Court. PETA has been campaigning for Sunder's release since 2012 and is represented in the Supreme Court by leading animal advocate Raj Panjwani.

All the paperwork for Sunder's transfer has been completed, and now the Maharashtra Forest Department simply needs to move Sunder. The health examination report also stated that Sunder's wound can be dressed, he is not in musth (a period of sexual urge in elephants that can make them difficult to handle) and he can and should be transported to Bangalore quickly.

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