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The Crying Elephant


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As obscene as it may sound, there is the possibility that Raju may be returned to the cruel owner from whom he was rescued last summer. The court case has been delayed until tomorrow, September 22.

 

There is a link at the bottom of the thread for any who wish to sign a petition in protest.

 

Cruel Former Owner of Raju the Elephant Vows to Put Him Back in Chains

 
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 Just when the future seemed forever bright for Raju, the “crying elephant,” a specter looms that might take his happiness away again.

Care2 members will remember Raju’s sad story. He lived a life of abject misery, spending 50 long years with a series of up to 27 different owners who starved him, beat him and kept him in chains.

Raju’s last owner, an alleged drug dealer and addict, forced him to wear painful spiked metal shackles on his legs. He controlled him by poking him with a sharp spear, using Raju to beg for money from tourists. Raju never had enough to eat, sometimes consuming things like plastic and paper to stay alive.

To see Raju’s story, watch this video:

 

The group Wildlife SOS found out what was going on and worked for a year behind the scenes to get Raju away from his captor. The group staged a dramatic midnight rescue on July 4, 2014. Armed with judicial pre-approval, Wildlife SOS’s ten veterinarians and wildlife experts, two police officers and 20 Forestry Commission officers moved in and confiscated Raju.

Reports say Raju wept a tear of joy as rescuers cut his chains from his poor, abscessed legs.

A Healthy, Happy Life with Other Elephant Friends

Since his rescue, Raju has been living peacefully at Wildlife SOS’s Elephant Conservation and Care Center in India. He’s now a member of a group of rescued elephants known as the Herd of Hope.

“He had been so terribly brutalized for 50 years that we feared he’d be unable to live with his own kind,” Wildlife SOS founder Kartick Satyanarayan told The Daily Mail. “He didn’t even know how to be an elephant. But now it’s like he’s always been with them.”

Raju now bathes in a pool whenever he wishes. He gets his fill of nourishing food and the medical care he needs to recover. Best of all, he lives with other elephants. It’s perhaps the first time in his life that he has companionship and loving care. He’s obviously much happier than he’s ever been, as evidenced by this photo:

happy_raju.jpeg

A Legal Challenge May Spell Doom for Raju

Shockingly, Raju’s good fortune may be poised to go sour. His former owner, the alleged drug dealer, wants him back. He’s taking his claim to India’s court system, asserting that Raju is his property and must be returned.

“Raju was treated with such appalling cruelty and torture,” Satyanarayan told The Mirror. “We will argue that the owner broke wildlife protection and animal cruelty laws and that Raju was being kept illegally. We want this case to set a precedent across India to change the way elephants are treated.”

Raju isn’t the only elephant at the sanctuary that is imperiled by legal action. Laxmi, a female elephant who suffered much the same type of cruelty as Raju, is also facing a legal demand that she be returned to her abusive former “owner.”

“After all he has been through, we still have to fight for his freedom,” lamented Satyanarayan to the Times of India. “We hope the honorable court will grant him justice. He has been treated with such appalling cruelty by his former owner, who has no legal claim on him under wildlife laws.”

Animal care experts agree that Raju simply cannot return to his former life, pictured below.

sad_raju1.jpg

“Raju still needs years of treatment, he has physical and psychological wounds. The thought that he may have to leave all this behind if his owner gets his way is heart-breaking,” Yaduraj Khadpekar, the veterinarian who is treating Raju, told the Times of India. “We want him to spend the rest of his life with some dignity, free from suffering and pain.”

Wildlife SOS Will Mount a Legal Defense to Save Raju

Wildlife SOS is doing everything it can to mount a successful legal defense for Raju and Laxmi. An aggressive fundraising effort is underway to enable the group to do what must be done to keep their rescued elephants free. A hearing on Raju’s case, originally scheduled for Sept. 4, has been delayed by a week. Wildlife SOS says on its Facebook page:

Raju’s case has been delayed, it will not be heard until September 11. We want you to know that we are feeling very confident and optimistic of the outcome. The few extra days allows us to be even more prepared and bring even more attention to this injustice.

“Necessary action has been initiated and the law will take its course,” Chief Wildlife Warden of the state Rupak De told the Times of India. “Raju is in safe hands with Wildlife SOS. The forest department will make sure justice prevails.”

laxmi_raju.jpeg

Raju and Laxmi, happy and comfortable in their sanctuary.

Oh, let that be true. May India’s justice system see clearly that the man who once kept Raju in chains as an emaciated and broken animal is not entitled in any way to regain control of this poor creature. Raju must remain in the care of Wildlife SOS. Instead, this former “owner” must be prosecuted for animal cruelty. Indeed, Indian authorities reportedly have filed a criminal case against this man.

If you agree and want to lend your voice to this cause, please sign this petition. It will go to the Chief Minister of India’s Supreme Court, asking him not to find in favor of the abuser who wants to enslave Raju again. Let the Indian court system know the world cares about what happens to Raju.

Raju must live protected and happy with others of his kind. Anything less is unacceptable — and unthinkable.

 

Here is the petition link for those who wish to sign and send a signal to the Indian court involved:

 

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/730/817/211/help-save-raju-the-elephant-from-being-returned-to-his-cruel-former-owners/?TAP=1007

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Giving Raju back to that monster would be criminal.  Fifty years of hell is enough.  You can already see his improvement in the photos.  He can't go from splashing in his pond and eating mangos to begging and scrounging for paper and plastic.  That just can't be allowed to happen.  

 

  

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Giving Raju back to that monster would be criminal.  Fifty years of hell is enough.  You can already see his improvement in the photos.  He can't go from splashing in his pond and eating mangos to begging and scrounging for paper and plastic.  That just can't be allowed to happen.  

Of course, I agree with you, Gay Divorcee.

 

It's a joy to see those photos of Raju bathing and using his trunk to retrieve fruits.

 

I implore any who care about animal cruelty to sign the petition of protest, whose link I'm again providing:

 

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/730/817/211/help-save-raju-the-elephant-from-being-returned-to-his-cruel-former-owners/?TAP=1007

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Just read Raju's court date has been delayed yet again, and is now Oct. 13th.  Here is more info:

 

https://www.facebook.com/wildlifesosindia

Thanks for the update, Gay Divorcee.

 

It could be a landmark court ruling, not just for Raju, but in regards to others elephants in the same situation of cruelty. That will be particularly the case, of course, should a decision be made to prosecute the owner. Quite frankly, it seems incredible that that has not already been done.

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  • 4 weeks later...

The Raju court case has been delayed again - this time until October 27.

In the meantime, here is a report about another elephant rescue from the Times of India, this pachyderm named Lilly.


After Raju, abused elephant Lilly rescued from Haryana
Ishita Mishra, TNN | Oct 13, 2014, 09.27PM IST



AGRA: After rescuing 'Raju', the elephant who cried when it was freed from shackles after 50 years, the NGO has saved another pachyderm which was also severely beaten and forced to beg on the streets.

The 35-year-old female elephant, 'Lilly', was rescued from Sirsa district in Haryana by a team of NGO Wildlife SOS, Mathura, and was transported to a nearby elephant rehabilitation center in Ban Santour, after Haryana's forest department informed the NGO about the poor condition of the animal.

Mathura-based vet Yaduraj Khadpekar, who headed the rescue operation, told TOI, "Lilly is in poor health. She has suffered physical and psychological trauma. She has severely overgrown nails on her feet, indicating a complete lack of foot care, and has a huge swelling on her right shoulder. She also has several wounds on her neck because of the ropes and chains she was abused with. She is undergoing medical treatment."

Kartick Satyanarayan, co-founder of Wildlife SOS, said, "Like Raju, Lilly is also a victim of gross mistreatment and abuse. She has suffered for over three decades. Throughout her days of misery, she was beaten and forced to beg on the streets, merely surviving on what she was getting to eat out of begging."

Details of Lilly's initial capture and captivity are yet to be confirmed, but according to the information provided by the Haryana forest department and wildlife SOS, she was captured as a calf in the north east (possibly Assam or Arunachal Pradesh). She was most likely then transported to Bihar where she was sold by unscrupulous wildlife traders at the Sonpur animal fair and was later sold to traders in Rajasthan. Lilly was possibly used in Jaipur for several years before she was sold to a man from Haryana.

Wildlife officer, Hisar, Shakti Singh, said the man who was abusing Lilly and had her in illegal custody has been arrested. The offender was unable to produce any documents to prove legal ownership of the elephant and the forest department will take action against him under the relevant provisions of the Wildlife Protection Act 1972, Singh added.

Forest department officials said most rescue operations are conducted at night so that those indulging in such activities do not escape easily. The team of elephant experts, along with Haryana forest department officials, travelled from Mathura to Sirsa to rescue Lilly.

Headed by Khadpekar, the team provided medical care to the elephant from the time of her rescue. It was an uphill task for the rescue team to lift the giant pachyderm into the truck as initially she resisted. She was administered with a mild sedative and gently coaxed into the truck.

The team also ensured that the pachyderm did not get dehydrated during the long truck journey.

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Thanks for the update, Tom.  Wonderful news about Lilly.  It will seem like paradise for her now.  The delay with Raju will allow him to gain weight and heal.  I hope his before and after photos help convince the judge to let him stay at the sanctuary.  

 

By the way, you might have seen there was a march for the elephants and rhinos in San Francisco (and cities around the world) a week ago or so.  Kim Basinger marched in S.F.  Such an angel for the animals!

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Thanks for the update, Tom.  Wonderful news about Lilly.  It will seem like paradise for her now.  The delay with Raju will allow him to gain weight and heal.  I hope his before and after photos help convince the judge to let him stay at the sanctuary.  

 

By the way, you might have seen there was a march for the elephants and rhinos in San Francisco (and cities around the world) a week ago or so.  Kim Basinger marched in S.F.  Such an angel for the animals!

 

No, I didn't know about the march in Frisco, GD. Thanks for the news. According to this article 136 cities around the world had marches on behalf of elephants and rhinos that day.

 

 

Marches to demand governments do more to stop the illegal trade in elephant tusks and rhino horns have been held in South Africa and around the world.

.

Source:

AAP

 

 

5 Oct 2014 - 1:39 AM UPDATED 5 Oct 2014 - 4:20 PM

 

 

 

Thousands of people in South Africa and around the world have marched to demand that governments do more to stop the illegal trade in slaughtered rhinoceroses and elephants.

 

Saturday's protests, organised by a movement of grassroot groups, were held in 136 cities and towns across six continents, from Soweto to San Francisco and Tokyo.

 

In South Africa, which is struggling to stem a rhino poaching crisis, demonstrators gathered in 17 cities.

 

"We are protesting against the political leaders of the world who do not have the guts and political will to make changes in their laws," Dex Kotze, one of the march organisers, told AFP.

 

Participants display the words 'Let Live' written on their palms as they take part in a Kenyan leg of the Global March for Elephants and Rhinos on the occasion of the World Animal Day in Nairobi, Kenya, 04 October 2014.

 

 

"We have to do this for our future generation," he said. "The youth today is making a statement globally in 136 cities that it's their heritage that is being killed for hundreds of years, it's going for stop."

 

From 27 million elephants 350 years ago, Africa now has about 400,000 left, and roughly nine per cent of those are being killed each year, Kotze said.

 

South Africa, home to the world's largest population of rhinos, has seen at least 700 killed so far this year.

 

The poaching of the rare African animal is increasing to meet demand from Asian countries where the rhino horn has long been used in traditional medicines for a variety of ailments, including fever and rheumatism.

 

More than 35,000 elephants are also killed across Africa very year for their tusks, which are used, especially in China, for prized decorations and trinkets.

 

Kotze said the protests meant to highlight the so-called gang-of-19 countries listed by CITES, the international regulatory body for trade in wildlife, as not doing enough to curb trafficking.

 

Among the countries are China, Vietnam, Laos, Mozambique, Angola and Kenya.

 

Kotze warned China that if it does not shut its 37 ivory carving factories and 130 retail outlets, "we will lose all the elephants".

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An odd thing, there was no TV news coverage, at least that I could find, and this year there was even a movie star.  I marched last year in S.F. (hundreds were present) and no coverage then either.  It's sad to think the possible extinction of the most magnificent creatures on earth isn't considered newsworthy.  

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I haven't heard if there was any verdict in Raju's court case yesterday, involving the cruel owner wanting him back. However, I did find this article from a volunteer with SOS Wildlife, and his update on Raju today. It sounds like the big guy is doing great.

 

Raju Learns New Skills

Mon, 2014-10-27 08:43 | by Kate

India%208-20-14%20065.JPGMy name is Steve Koyle and I’m the Senior Elephant Keeper at the Phoenix Zoo. I’ve been working with elephants for almost 13 years. I had the honor of meeting Kartick and Geeta three years ago at an elephant conference in Oakland, CA. I became inspired by the work of Wildlife SOS and soon after traveled to India to volunteer with Wildlife SOS.

Raju is an amazing elephant. It was only one month after his rescue that I traveled to India for the second time to help. Knowing his history of abuse and mistreatment, I couldn’t believe how calm and comfortable he seemed. Raju is a “gentle giant”, standing 10’6” at the shoulder

Raju really seemed to respond well to being spoken to in a nice and calm manner… he enjoys being treated kindly. Like most elephants, he enjoys fresh produce and the occasional sweets.

All captive elephants need training. Training for basic husbandry such as checking and trimming feet, mouth exams and drawing blood are very important aspects of elephant care. Most rescued elephants usually have some sort of medical issue caused from abuse and mistreatment. Training is essential to medically treat these wounds in a nice, calm and chain free way.

raju%20eatin%20target.jpgI mainly worked on target training with Raju. Target training, which relies on positive reinforcement for the elephants for repeated actions, has been found to greatly reduce the elements of stress, tension, and danger. Knowing that in his past he was repeatedly stabbed with a spear, I must admit that I was a little apprehensive to touch him with a target. I wasn’t sure how he would react and I didn’t what to betray his trust. To my pleasant surprise, all he wanted to do was eat the target.

For me, the first step in training Raju was to spend the first few days just being around him. I started by tossing him some food and putting some positive energy out there. I didn’t want to do too much to fast. Eventually, we got to head target training. He was a superstar.

Working with Raju, we made very good progress with his target training. He became more comfortable with me and the training. In November, we’ll continue more of his training and improving the quality of his life.

Outside of Raju’s physical appearance and obvious injuries, you couldn’t really tell he’s had a difficult life. This is a true testament to how great Raju and all elephants are. The capacity that elephants have to forgive people for what has been done to them is truly remarkable.

The biggest challenge that Raju faces is simply learning how to be an elephant. He’s been told what to do, beaten and abused for many years. Now he has the freedom of choice. He has the option of swimming, dusting, scratching, foraging and sleeping on big sand beds under the stars. Raju has never had the option to do these normal elephant behaviors. Now, he can do as he chooses. He’s free.

Raju is very good with the female elephants. He is fond of the three munchkins, Laxmi, Chanchal and Bijli; he’s very relaxed and comfortable with them. He and Laxmi seem to really like each other. They were very relaxed with one another.

For people who want to help elephants, I would recommend supporting elephant conservation organizations like Wildlife SOS. I would tell people never to buy ivory and never to ride an elephant.  

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Tried to find the outcome online, with no luck.  Maybe the hearing has been postponed yet again?

 

Thanks or posting the article.  It's so good to know Raju is thriving in his sanctuary.  A life of such abuse and deprivation, and he is apparently gentle with humans.  Animals are remarkable.

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Raju's court case has been postponed yet again! Now it's November 17, and is anyone foolish enough to think it won't be postponed then, as well? What is it with the Indian court system? Are they waiting for him to no longer be an international "hot potato" so they can make a decision receiving less attention?

 

Sorry, that's just the way my old cynical mind works these days.

 

At least Raju is safe for the time being while all this court nonsense takes place.

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Raju's court case has been postponed yet again! Now it's November 17, and is anyone foolish enough to think it won't be postponed then, as well? What is it with the Indian court system? Are they waiting for him to no longer be an international "hot potato" so they can make a decision receiving less attention?

 

Sorry, that's just the way my old cynical mind works these days.

 

At least Raju is safe for the time being while all this court nonsense takes place.

The longer this goes on the harder it is to imagine the judge allowing him to return to his former owner.  (I think I read he's had a few dozen owners in his 50 years.)   You can see the difference after four months of nourishment and kind treatment.  May this dear boy only know happiness at the sanctuary for the rest of his life.

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The longer this goes on the harder it is to imagine the judge allowing him to return to his former owner.  (I think I read he's had a few dozen owners in his 50 years.)   You can see the difference after four months of nourishment and kind treatment.  May this dear boy only know happiness at the sanctuary for the rest of his life.

It would be all the more cruel to return Raju to his owner after this extended period in the sanctuary. It would be truly emotionally devastating for the animal, even though I assume that a terrible court decision like that might be appealed, if the Indian court system allows that.

 

You would hope that with the international attention on this case that there would be tremendous pressure on the judge to not return the elephant. Still, exasperating that a final court decision keeps getting constantly delayed.

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  • 3 weeks later...

 

How is Raju doing now?

 

Since his rescue about 4 months ago, Raju has come a long way! According to our senior veterinarian Dr. Yaduraj, "Raju's condition has improved a lot. He has gained about 100 kilos and his shoulder wound is healing."

 

Raju has also made some elephant friends at our sanctuary, where he has been quite a hit with the ladies. And you can see in the pic at left that he's a big fan of spending time in his pool (and what could be better than eating a delicious snack while bathing?).

Of course, it takes time and lots of good care to recover from 50 years of abuse, so Raju still has healing to do. We are committed to caring for him for the rest of his life, and to seeing him recover as much as possible from the wounds of his past.

 

 

 

What's happening with the court case?

 

As you'll remember from the petition, Raju's former "owner" is attempting to get him back through the courts. So far, the hearing has been postponed several times. And one time it was almost heard, but Mr. Shahid (Raju's former owner) didn't show up. We now expect the case to be heard on November 21st, and our lawyers are confident and ready for it whenever it is finally heard.

Until then, our energies are focused on giving Raju a happy life. To keep up to date on how he is doing, you can visit our website (www.wildlifesos.org) and/or follow us on Facebook.

Thanks again for caring about this beautiful creature.

Sincerely,

All of us at Wildlife SOS

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Thanks for the update, Tom.

 

Some good news; Wildlife SOS wrote that Raju's previous owner didn't show up for the Nov. 21st hearing.  Apparently if he doesn't show up for another scheduled hearing, the case could be dismissed.  We can only hope!

Thanks for your update, GD. Things seem to be looking positive for Raju. That's at least the second time that his previous owner was a no show in court.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks, GD. We finally have the great news. Raju's days of suffering are over.

 

No need to cry anymore Raju! The elephant whose tears captured the hearts of millions is finally declared free from his former owners

  • Raju was held in chains for more than 50 years by abusive owners in India
  • The animal bled from spiked shackles and lived on hand-outs from tourists
  • Was freed from captivity earlier this year by a UK-based wildlife charity
  • Elephant was seen to be shedding tears of joy when he was released
  • However former owners had launched a legal bid to reclaim the animal
  • But an Indian court ruled he is to stay with conservationists Wildlife SOS

ByJennifer Newton for MailOnline

Published: 12:17 GMT, 2 December 2014 | Updated: 15:38 GMT, 2 December 2014

 

 

An elephant who was brought to tears after being held in chains and beaten for more than 50 years has finally been declared free from his former abusive owners.

Raju was left bleeding from spiked shackles and living on hand-outs from passing tourists after he was captured and tied up by his 'owner'.

The majestic animal had been forced to hold out his trunk and beg for coins from passers-by – surviving only on plastic and paper for food in the Uttar Pradesh area of India.

Scroll down for video

23A8C8D600000578-2857373-image-3_1417521

 

Raju celebrates by playing in the water at the Wildlife SOS Elephant Conservation and Care Centre in India after it was ruled he is finally free of his former abusive owners

23A8C90900000578-2857373-image-4_1417521

 

Raju's former owners had launched a legal battle in the Indian courts to reclaim him after insisting he was their 'rightful property'

This prompted a 10-strong team of vets and wildlife experts as well as 20 forestry department officers and six policemen to seize Raju from his suffering in July of this year.

But, after 50 years of torture, the animal cried tears of relief after he was rescued by a wildlife charity in a daring midnight operation – fittingly on American Independence Day.

However, last month the elephant's future was left hanging in the balance after his former owners launched a legal battle to reclaim him after insisting he was their 'rightful property'.

But last night after a series of hearings, an Indian court ruled that Raju must stay with his rescuers from the British charity Wildlife SOS.

Founder of the charity Kartick Satyanarayan, who led the daring, midnight rescue to save Raju said: 'We are beyond overjoyed that Raju is finally saved.

'This is a huge victory, not only for Raju, but for every elephant suffering in pain silently.

23A8C8F600000578-2857373-image-5_1417521

 

 

In the court in India, Wildlife SOS lawyers argued an elephant cannot be owned by someone under Indian law as they are all owned by the Government

23A8C8F200000578-2857373-image-15_141752

 

 

Founder of the Wildlife SOS charity Kartick Satyanarayan said it was unthinkable that Raju may have had to be returned to his former life

'Elephants are majestic, intelligent animals, who are proven to grieve and feel emotion – so for an elephant to suffer for 50 years in chains, as Raju has, is truly barbaric.

'When his former owners launched a legal bid to get him back it was unthinkable that he could return to the life he'd had begging on the streets in shackles.

'We were determined to fight for him to ensure he could live out his days free from beatings and harm and we've had many a sleepless night worrying about what the future held for him.

'He had been so terribly brutalised for 50 years that we feared he'd be unable to live with his own kind. He didn't even know how to be an elephant. But now he's joined our herd of rescued Indian elephants it's like he's always been with them.'

In the court in India, Wildlife SOS lawyers argued an elephant cannot be owned by someone under Indian law as they are all owned by the Government.

They successfully argued that only a license issued from the Chief Wildlife Warden is proof of ownership.

23A8C8E300000578-2857373-image-7_1417521

 

 

The legal team of Raju's former owners were unable to produce documents to show that they were the certified owners of the elephant

23A8C8C200000578-2857373-image-16_141752

 

Wildlife experts believe that Raju was poached from his mother as a young calf before being sold on and treated as a commodity

When the legal team of Raju's previous owner were unable to produce a certificate the case was dismissed.

Wildlife SOS executive director Nikki Sharp explained: 'This meant that Raju was finally truly free and there is no chance he will be returned to the shackles that chained him for 50 years.

'It was completely outrageous to us that two months after we'd cut his chains his freedom was threatened.

'He had just started to settle into his new home with our charity, making friends and learning to trust people.

'It was too cruel to contemplate that this was under threat.

'Although we always hoped we would win this case because we all love Raju we couldn't help but feel profound anxiety over what was happening. Now, finally his future is secure.'

The court case followed the rescue of Raju by the London-based charity who had stepped in to save the elephant from dying in his bonds.

Mr Satyanarayan added: 'Like all of the elephants we have rescued, we believe Raju was poached from the his mother as a young calf.

 

A 10-strong team of vets and wildlife experts were joined by 20 forestry department officers and six policemen to seize Raju from his suffering in July

 

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The head vet from the charity Wildlife SOS Dr Yaduraj Khadpekar had the job of freeing Raju from his chains

 

He was discovered have been held in chains which had left him bleeding from spiked shackles and was forced to beg for food from passing tourists

'The poachers either slaughter the mother, or they drive the herd into traps that are small enough only for the babies to fall into. The mother cries for her baby for days after he's been stolen – it is a sickening trade.

'The calves are then tied and beaten until they submit to their owners – their spirits are effectively broken.

'Raju's case was particularly tragic. He'd been poached as a calf and then he has been sold on and sold on. Incredibly we believe he has had up to 27 owners – he's been treated as a commodity every two years of his life.

 

The moment that Raju was finally freed from his chains, wildlife experts said that tears rolled down his face as he began to cry

 

A delighted Raju appears to smile after enjoying his first meal after being freed. The charity believes that the elephant had a total of 27 owners after being poached as a calf

'By the time we found him in July 2013 he was in a pathetic condition. He had no shelter for him at night, and was being used as a prop to beg from dawn until dusk from tourists visiting the sites of India.

 

'He hadn't been fed properly and tourists started giving him sweet food items and because he was in a state of hunger and exhaustion he began eating plastic and paper.

'It took us 45 minutes to remove the shackles that had torn into the flesh on his legs for the past 50 years – and act of unthinkable cruelty. And it was when he was finally freed that tears gushed down his face. I'd never seen anything like it in my life.

'His legs were so covered in absesses and his feet so damaged by walking on hard tarmac roads, that we have spent £40,000 so far on his medical treatment, and we still have a long way to go as he has a serious limp and open wounds.

'Pain and brutality were all he knew. His cruel handler even tore out the hair from his tail to sell as good luck charms. The exploitation and abuse just had to stop.'

Now the charity has launched a Christmas campaign to save the last 67 performing circus elephants in India to join the charity's herd of hope.

 

The charity has so far spent £40,000 on the elephant's medical treatment so far and he is still suffering from open wounds and a serious limp

 

After his release, Raju was taken to Wildlife SOS's sanctuary. The organisation is also planning to rescue another elephant from its abusive owner

Mr Satyanarayan added: 'Raju and our herd of hope are the lucky ones. But there are 67 performing elephants in India – many of which suffer daily beatings in order to make them perform.

'We're already planning our next rescue – the desperate case of a blind elephant who is forced to perform even though she can't see for crowds. It's a pitiful case and we need to free her so she can join Raju.

'Now the public can help him live out a dignified life in peace with even a small donation,' Mr said Kartick, whose charity is dependent on public donations.

'All these elephants have known from human beings is pain and suffering – now we're asking to help us help him live out their days, with grass under their feet – free from humiliation and pain.'

To donate see Welcome to Wildlife SOS.

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