The elephant popularly known as Thissa Petiya belonging to the Tissamaharama Raja Maha Viharaya was now on the brink of death due to inaction of the Wildlife Department, the Attorney General’s Department, the CID and the Government, the Convener of the National Movement to Protect Tame Elephants Magalkande Sudaththa Thera said yesterday.
“Including Thissa Petiya, about 30 tamed elephants have been taken to custody after the present Government came to power,” he said.
He said that the 28-year-old elephant had been tied on to a tree for three years since the day it had been taken into custody.
“We demand that the relevant authorities should take action for the release of these animals for the sake of their lives. As a result of not taking action, these elephants have to pay with their lives”.
“About 250 elephants were killed annually due to inappropriate action taken by our government and with the intervention of non-governmental organisations (NGOs),” he said.
“The government which had failed to prevent some 250 elephants being killed annually, was trying to unnecessarily interfere with the tame elephants,” Ven. Sudaththa Thera said.
“We see this as one conspiracy brought to destroy the Sinhala Buddhist culture and society by this government with the support of NGOs,” he said.
“Therefore, the Wildlife Department, Attorney General’s Department, CID and the government should take the responsibility for what had happened to this elephant”.
“This was the elephant which acted in the children's family film ‘Ali Patiyo Oyai Mamai’ which was released in 2006 to show the extraordinary friendship between the elephant and a child” (Chaturanga Samarawickrama)