The body of a hungry elephant “tortured” by the owners who parade it in festival costume

A 70-year-old elephant has been pictured shockingly emaciated and malnourished in Sri Lanka.

Each rib is visible on Tikiiri, who will be working alongside 60 elephants for the Perahera festival despite his frail body.

She will be forced to parade in a festival costume alongside her fellow elephants.

The ten-day Buddhist festival features the decorated animals as well as a myriad of performers including dancers, jugglers, fire eaters and musicians.

The poignant images of Tikiiri were shared by the Save Elephant Foundation to mark World Elephant Day on Monday.

The animal looks very emaciated

The foundation said, “Tikiri joins the parade from early every night until late at night every night for ten consecutive nights, amid the noise, fireworks and smoke.

“She walks many miles each night to make people feel blessed during the ceremony.”

The costume covers how weak and bony his body is in his old age.

The foundation continued, “No one sees their bony body or their weakened state, because of their costume,” the foundation wrote.

“No one sees the tears in her eyes, hurt by the bright lights that decorate her mask, no one sees her difficulty walking as her legs are hampered as she walks.

“How can we call it [the festival] a blessing, or something holy, if we make other lives suffer? “

The organization said Tikiiri was working for the “Temple of the Tooth in Kandy City” and urged viewers to “write to the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka to end this cruelty.”

“We cannot bring a peaceful world to the elephant if we still think this image is acceptable,” they added.

“To love, not to hurt, to follow a path of kindness and compassion, this is the Buddha Way. It is time to follow.”

The non-profit organization Save Elephant Foundation focuses on providing care to the captive elephant population of Thailand.

The costume the elephant will wear for the festival

It was founded by Sangdeaun Lek Chailert, who began to champion the welfare of elephants in Asia because of his love for the country’s national symbol and fears that the species was endangered.

“It is our mission to save the Asian elephant from extinction and to give domesticated elephants a life worth living by preserving habitat and raising awareness of humane treatment practices,” said declared the Save Elephant Foundation.

The foundation runs Elephant Nature Park – a sanctuary in Chiang Mai, northern Thailand – among a number of other projects.

World Animal Protection estimates that 3,000 elephants are used for entertainment across Asia, 77 percent of which are treated inhumanely.

A spokesperson for the Sacred Tooth Relic said Metro they always “care about animals” during their holidays.

Gerald R. Schneider

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