World Elephant Day 2020: Vice Prez Naidu pledges support to ‘Haathi Hamara Saathi’
On World Elephant Day 2020, Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar highlights measures to curb the incidents of human-elephant conflicts in India and reaffirm the bond of coexistence with ‘Haathi Hamara Saathi’.Updated: Aug 12, 2020 16:47 IST
Conceived by the Elephant Reintroduction Foundation and filmmakers Patricia Sims and Michael Clark in 2011, the first international Elephant Day was celebrated on August 12, 2012. The aim of the day is to sensitise people about better treatment of captive elephants and against the illegal poaching and trade of the jumbos for ivory.
Given the latest incident of the death of the pregnant elephant in Kerala after allegedly consuming a cracker-stuffed fruit, death of elephants in some Indian states due to an electric pole falling on them or other human-elephant conflicts, Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar highlighted the measures to curb the same. The Vice President too pledged his support to ‘Haathi Hamara Saathi’.
On the eve of World Elephant Day, Javadekar launched a beta version of the national portal on human-elephant conflict called ‘Surakhsya’. He even released a document on the best practices for ensuring the human-elephant coexistence. Sharing a video he tweeted, “India has nearly 60% of wild Asian elephants not just because of strong wildlife laws, but because we Indians revere, are more tolerant & affectionate towards animals. On this #WorldElephantDay2020, let us reaffirm this bond of coexistence with #HaathiHamaaraSaathi. @moefcc (sic).”
Vice President of India, M Venkaiah Naidu too pledged his support in protecting the jumbos. He tweeted, “On this #WorldElephantDay, let us pledge to prevent any mistreatment of these magnificent animals and the cruelty they endure in captivity. Every effort must be made to curb elephant-man conflicts & habitat loss of #elephants #WorldElephantDay2020 #HaathiHamaraSaathi (sic).”
Elaborating on the efforts of the government to curb the threats faced by the giant animals, he added, “#Elephants form a crucial part of our ecosystem.They hold a place of great significance & reverence in our culture.They are empathetic, self- aware & socially intelligent. Unfortunately, they face a number of threats from poaching for tusks to habitat loss to abuse in captivity. Due to relentless efforts of the government,India is now home to 60% of the global Asian #elephant population,with nearly 30 elephant reserves.
With enhanced community participation & concerted efforts of the governments,we must strive to further augment our elephant population (sic).”
Turning vulnerable by the day, the population of African elephants in the wild is 4,15,000 as per the latest report by WWF. To help protect them for maintaining the biodiversity of rain forests, World Elephant Day is celebrated on August 12 each year and marked by raising awareness about the plight of the elephants in the wild while also finding out the ways to protect them.