The 40-year-old wild elephant was injured a month ago after it strayed out of Savandurga forest and fell into a ditch near Dodderi, off Mysuru Road. The jumbo suffered injuries to its leg, shoulder and stomach. The elephant was treated and sent back to Savandurga forest but soon returned to Manchanabele waters.
Moved by the elephant’s plight, last week wildlife enthusiasts Savita Bharamagoudraand her husband Kiran SJ started a campaign for Sidda’s treatment. Backed by 20-odd friends, the duo’s initiative, Save Namma Sidda, aims to take the animal’s painful story to the people.
The volunteers, working under the brand Young India Wild India, plan to visit various schools, colleges and corporates to spread the word about Sidda, who they think has been left to rot. On Sunday , the couple visited Sidda and were saddened to see no improvement in his health. “He comes out of the water to have his food, but barely steps out otherwise.When we went to see him, we took sugarcane, coconut and bananas, and he ate them. However, he seemed to be in tremendous pain. Despite medication, his swelling hasn’t come down.I’m scared he’ll develop gangrene or lose his leg,” said Savita.
“We are trying to put pressure on the authorities to treat Sidda or permit us to adopt him and take care of his treatment,” she added.
As part of the campaign, there’ll be a protest at Town Hall for the elephant’s treatment, the date for which is yet to be finalized.
NO WORD YET ON RELOCATING JUMBO
The elephant is eating whatever food is being given to it. But there’s not much difference to its wounds from how they were on the first day. Medicines are being given to him and the vet visited him 3-4 times recently. I don’t have information on relocating the jumbo back to the forest, Al Dalesh, Range Forest officer, Magadi.
It may finally take people’s power to save Sidda. While the elephant gamely copes with its injuries, it’s taking a while before it recovers completely and heads back into the forest. The authorities should either do what’s required to speed up the healing process or allow volunteers to adopt the animal and do their bit.When war-scarred elephants can be healed in Sri Lanka, there’s no reason why Sidda shouldn’t get the required medical attention and be restored to good health. Pinning one’s hope on Nature alone isn’t enough in this case; we must chip in too.