Raid Against Owners for Illegally Keeping Elephants
21 October 2005
Two young elephants being kept illegally in Delhi were seized on 14
October 2005. Their owners were hiring them out for religious festivals
and weddings. The 6 year old female calf and the 11 year old male have
now been shifted to the Delhi Zoo.
Acting on information from the Wildlife Protection Society of India
(WPSI), the Department of Wildlife Preservation (Government of India)
and the Delhi Wildlife Department jointly raided two elephant owners in
Yamuna Pushta, Delhi. Both the owners were unable to produce
The papers for the female calf showed that she was from Chhapra, Bihar.
However, the owner had no state transit permit or document from the
Delhi government to show how she had been transported to Delhi. The
other owner had papers apparently issued by the Chief Wildlife Warden,
Itanagar, for an 18 year old male. However, the veterinarian from the
Delhi Zoo, who was present during the raid, said that the young male
was clearly around 11 years of age.
Both the elephants were taken to the Zoo on the night of 14 October,
while the owners were asked to produce ownership certificates the next
day. When they failed to do so, a case was filed against them on 20
October. Investigations are continuing.
Trade in elephant calves illegally caught from wild herds in the
north-east has become a huge problem. WPSI has records of several cases
investigated by the Forest Department of Jalpaiguri, West Bengal, where
wild-caught elephant calves were being transported to various parts of
India. Some had forged certificates from the office of the Chief
Wildlife Wardens, while others had no certificates at all.