Video of elephant being hit at rejuvenation camp goes viral

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(EDS: Updating, adding details) Coimbatore, Feb 21 (PTI): A video of two mahouts for purportedly ill-treating an elephant in a camp at Thekkampatti, about 50 KMs from here, has gone viral in the social media.

One of the mahouts has been suspended.

Drawing condemnation from the public and wildlife activists, the video taken by a visitor to the elephants rejuvenation camp shows the men with sticks hitting the animal on its legs and it is heard trumpeting in pain.

The elephant, said to be from Srivilliputhur temple, was tied to a tree and being hit, the video reveals.

When contacted, a source in HR&CE (HIndu Religious and Charitable Endowments) Department which organised the 48-day camp said higher officials too had seen the video and one of the mahouts has been placed under suspension pending departmental inquiry.

The camp for temple and mutt elephants is being held annually. A total of 26 elephants are in the camp this year.