9 February 2017

Rukku Goes on Holiday in 2017

The below heart-filled photograph is of lovely Rukku of Arunachaleswarar Temple, being loaded up on a lorry (immediately on completion of the Mahakumbhabhishekam ceremony) on her way to a VACATION. 

The death of Chief Minister Jayalalithaa raised doubts on whether or not the yearly Elephant Rejuvenation Camp would be held in 2017. But happily, things were sorted, decisions made and a number of very happy elephants will be romping and sporting together for 30 days. 

One can see Rukku's joy in the photograph. This will be the ninth time she has participated in the Camp . . . and she knows whats going on. 

Rukku on her way

The much awaited rejuvenation camp for Temple elephants begins today Thursday, February 9, 2017. The venue is along the Bhavani River at Thekkampatti near Mettupalayam today. 

Officials of the Hindu Religious Charitable Endowment Department completed as many as 38 works related to setting up sheds for mahouts and kavadis, who are accompanying the elephants from all across the State. In addition makeshift sheds for kitchen, foods and medicines for the elephants and personnel have been set up. 

In order to prevent the entry of wild elephants, the Department has installed solar electric fences around the camp. A shed has been set up for veterinary doctors, who will supervise the elephants’ health. CCTVs have been fixed around the camp to monitor the movement of wild animals and to prevent the entry of unidentified persons inside the camp. 

The HRCE Department has instructed Temples and Mutts to bring their elephants to the rejuvenation camp. Two years ago, elephants attached to the Forest Department also participated in the camp at Nellithurai near Mettupalayam. However this year, the Government has planned Rejuvenation Camps for the Forest Department elephants at camps at Chadivayal, Kozhikamuthi near Topslip in Coimbatore District and Mudhumalai in the Nilgris District. 

The first elephant rejuvenation camp held at Mudhumalai in 2003 was inaugurated by the former Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa. In 2013 the venue for such camps was shifted to Thekkampatti near Mettupalayam. During the DMK regime (2006-2011) elephant rejuvenation camps were not conducted. 

This year, the Tamil Nadu State Government has sanctioned Rs.1.16 crores for conducting the rejuvenation camp for 41 elephants across the State and from Puducherry. As of now, 33 elephants have been enlisted to participate in the rejuvenation camp. 


Anonymous said...

Yeah Rukku. Have a great time.

Susan Davies said...

This news makes me happy.

Anonymous said...

Sweet Rukku! Have a great time

Anonymous said...

I wonder how Rukku feels on being loaded for the return trip.

Meenakshi Ammal said...

It breaks my heart to think of her having to return to her sad, austere, lonely life as a Temple Elephant. She is forced to stand motionless in a sand box which is about 6 feet by 6 feet over 10 hours a day (is that the best they can do in a Temple measuring 25 acres!?) All day she is surrounded by Temple visitors, noise and chaos. She is chained at night. She has no contact with other elephants.

I pray that the the Court Cases brought by animal lovers in this country to permanently liberate Temple elephants succeed.

One positive to remember regarding Rukku's live at the Temple is (from talking with people who know) she does not have to bear the physical torture and mistreatment that Temple elephants in other States have to endure.