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Tamilnadu Temples Elephant vacation in mudumalai 2

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Uploaded on Dec 21, 2011

Rejuvenation Camp for Temple and Private Elephants of Tamil Nadu

Forest Minister K T Pachamal inaugurated the 48-day camp after according a ceremonial welcome with "aarti" to 45 elephants, which arrived at Theppakadu in Mudumalai Tiger Reserve (MTR) in the hilly Nilgiris District of the state.

As Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa announced the revival of the annual rejuvenation camp on December nine, elephants from various temples and mutts were brought to the cool climes of Mudumalai in trucks.

Having spent most of the time blessing the devotees in temples and taking part in temple processions and rituals, the Jumbos, most of them females, were relaxing at the camp, enjoying a royal treatment.

The elephants were brought in two batches in trucks from various temples and mutts across the state, said Mr A Ameer Haja, Deputy Director, MTR and Mukurthi National Park.

After reaching Mettuplayam, all the elephants were taken through the Mettupalayam-Kotagiri-Ooty Road and then travelled down to the camp via Gudalur, he said.

During the camp, all the elephants will be provided with 'Chavanprash', Liv 52 and multivitamin mix daily apart from green-gram, ragi, rice and jaggery as part of the special menu, Mr Ameer Haja said.

The elephants would be given rejuvenation diet, basically green fodder including sugarcane, sorghum and cariota leaves. Coconuts and banana will also be included in the special menu for the elephants daily, he added. K Danapal, Joint Commissioner, Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowment Department said the elephants would be provided with two meals a day, including about 150 kgs of nutrious meal and green fodder. The temple elephants would be given anti-viral showered bath and walk through patches of bleaching and lime powder to be infection-free.

They would also be given a regular bath in the nearby river, he said. During the 45 days, the Pachyderms would be given complete rest to make them fully rejuvenated when they leave the camp, he said.

The camp area has been fenced and visitors are not allowed inside the camp," he said. The jumbos, which used to live alone in their respective temples, should be happy to see so many elephants at one spot, he said. More UNI WS GM 1636

The rejuvenation camp, the brain-child of Ms Jayalalithaa, was conducted for three years from 2003 during the previous previous AIADMK Regime but discontinued after the DMK came to power in 2006.

On coming back to power, Ms Jayalalithaa announced the revival of the camp, but it ran into a controversy when Public Interest Litigations were filed in Madras High court, against holding the camp at a cost of Rs 45 lakh.

During the previous AIADMK regime, 30-day camp was held in the year 2003 for 55 elephants, 48-day camp for 65 elephants in 2004 and 48-day camp for 63 elephants in 2005, she said.

The Court, however, dismissed the petitions, saying that the court could not intervene in the policy decisions of the government.

The mahouts and temple authorities, who accompanied the elephants, would be trained in elephant management to make sure they ensure a stress-free life to the elephants, post-rejuvenation camp. (UNI)

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