Cabinet plans to identify potential rogue elephants eggs before they hatch and move them to a finishing school to teach them how to say “thank you” after eating farmers’ crops.
Rama sent me a hilarious e-mail last morning. (We actually get on despite that bahu bootha story about me molesting his wife).
Rama likes to keep in touch with what is going on this side of the Palk Strait; so, he reads the Sri Lankan papers. This is a bad idea if you actually want to understand what is going on, but it is okay if you just want to have a laugh while attending to your morning victuals (or, if you find that you are out of loo roll once you have attended to them).
Nevertheless, he was reading the relatively credible Daily Mirror last morning when an article about the Sri Lankan cabinet approving a certain bill caught his eye. It turns out that in a bold move of unprecedented brilliance, the cabinet aims to provide a permanent solution to the human-elephant conflict in rural farming villages. The simple solution: tame the wild rogue elephants.
Now, why didn’t I think of that? This is the type of intelligent foresight that really makes the UPFA government special. Very special.
Here’s the content of Rama’s e-mail. The Daily Mirror article in question is attached below.
Ah yes. lovely idea. i can just see it working.
“Aah …ithing? Umbata monawada oney?” “Sir…. papol gedi vissakui vattakka gedi dahayak karuna-karala?”“Umbata badak neveyi thiyennei…. maha valak!! …. hmmm…. hondhing ahuwa-nisa umbata dhennang.”“Isthoothhi sir”“Thogey aachchi kohomada?”“Hondai sir…. Wasgamuwata gihilla vahana elawala podi aathal ekak gannawa.”
Bill to ‘reform’ wild jumbos under fire (Daily Mirror, May 24)
By Jeevani Pereira
Recent Cabinet approval of a Bill to capture and tame wild elephants, in order to minimize the Human-Elephant conflict, has come under fire from Animal Rights Activists.
Sagarika Rajakarunanayake, frowning on the Government’s decision, said that the conservationists should have been consulted first.
“There had been no public knowledge of the Bill beforehand since it deals with an issue that cannot be resolved by taking a political decision,” she said, adding that the government’s move is a disaster for the local elephant.
She added that the Human-Elephant conflict was worsened by the Wildlife Department itself, because of last year’s Elephant Drive.
“The Elephant Drive, done to translocate them, turned out to be a huge failure, as they were driven into areas with more human habitation,” she pointed out
However, Managing Trustee of the Bio Diversity and Elephant Conservation Fund, Jayantha Jayawardena said that the capturing and taming of problem elephants would slow down their extinction, as they are at a higher risk of being killed in the wild.
“We are drawing up a process that demands that the animals be properly identified as rogue elephants who have been responsible for destroying crops and houses,” he explained, adding that they will only be given to be tamed to people who have the financial capacity and proper management skills.
“It costs at least Rs 40,000 a month, to feed an elephant and they have to be given veterinary attention every six months,” he said. “Therefore, we will not be giving them to just any politician or temple, to take care of the animal.”