Today in New Delhi, India
Jul 22, 2019-Monday
-°C
New Delhi
  • Humidity
    -
  • Wind
    -

Uttarakhand HC to state government: Release adequate fund for upkeep of elephants

The Uttarakhand high court on Monday directed the state government to release sufficient fund for upkeep of the elephants seized by the forest department, including their specialised treatment.

dehradun Updated: Sep 25, 2018 06:00 IST
Neeraj Santoshi
Neeraj Santoshi
Hindustan Times, Nainital
Uttarakhand HC,Uttarakhand,elephants
This picture taken on August 21, 2018 shows mahouts with their elephant near the Yamuna River in New Delhi. (AFP Representative Photo)

The Uttarakhand high court on Monday directed the state government to release sufficient fund for upkeep of the elephants seized by the forest department, including their specialised treatment. Earlier the HC was apprised that some of the elephants were suffering from Tuberculosis.

Neha Verma, divisional forest officer, Ramnagar Forest Division also apprised the HC that the health of the ailing elephants was improving. “These elephants are being examined by a team of veterinary doctors,” she told the court.

A division bench of acting chief justice Rajiv Sharma and Manoj Kumar Tiwari gave these directions while hearing a public interest litigation regarding encroachments around Corbett tiger reserve. The next hearing in the matter will be on October 8, 2018.

On September 14, HC was apprised that according to the report of veterinary doctors, the elephants captured around Corbett were suffering from serious ailment. “Two elephants have been diagnosed with advance stage of tuberculosis,” the order said.

Last month, the HC had directed the state government to protect the rescued elephants by implementing the provisions of the Care and Maintenance of Case Property Animals Rules 2017 in letter and spirit. On August 3, HC had banned the commercial use of elephants in the entire Uttarakhand till further orders including joyrides and rides by the owners of resorts.

The forest department seized the elephants following HC directions to the state forest department on August 3 to take possession of the jumbos with private individuals in the state and shift them temporarily to Rajaji National Park. The HC also directed the forest department to get their medical examination done.

The HC gave these directions after two counsels raised the issue about elephants during the hearing in the case on August 3.

“A startling revelation has been made before the court by CK Sharma and Dharmendra Barthwal, advocates that the elephants are chained, ill-treated and few elephants are blind but still being used commercially by the owners of the resorts in Corbett Tiger Reserve area, causing immense cruelty to the elephants. Their conditions are pathetic. Their captivity is in violation of Sections 40 and 42 of Wildlife Protection Act, 1975,” the HC order said.

First Published: Sep 25, 2018 06:00 IST