Retired TN ‘kumki’ elephant 'Moorthy' dies in rehabilitation camp

The elephant died on Saturday night and the post-mortem will be conducted on Sunday

'Moorthy' was a gigantic elephant at 9.5 m and weighing 4.5 tonnes. (photo: IANS)
'Moorthy' was a gigantic elephant at 9.5 m and weighing 4.5 tonnes. (photo: IANS)
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IANS

'Moorthy', the Kumki elephant of the Tamil Nadu forest department which retired a few years ago, died in Theppakadu elephant rehabilitation camp.

The elephant died on Saturday night and the post-mortem will be conducted on Sunday.

The elephant, which is a tuskless Makhana, was a ferocious elephant and had killed 23 people in Kerala before it was captured by the Tamil Nadu forest department in 1998. The Kerala Chief Wildlife warden had then issued a shooting order against the animal, which entered into Tamil Nadu forest areas and killed two more people.

However, the then Tamil Nadu veterinary surgeon, Dr. Krishnamoorthy had then prevailed upon the Tamil Nadu government that it was a rare elephant and that it should be captured instead of being killed. Dr. Krishnamoorthy led the operation and captured the elephant on July 12, 1998 at Vachikoli area in Gudalur forest division of Tamil Nadu. The elephant was named 'Moorthy’ after Dr. Krishnamoorthy.

Sources in the Theppakadu elephant rehabilitation camp where the elephant died, told IANS that the elephant when it was captured in 1998 and brought to the camp had 15 bullet injuries. These injuries, according to officials, would have been caused by the firing of poachers or farmers in Kerala and Tamil Nadu.

The forest department officials told IANS that the elephant after being tamed into a ‘Kumki’ turned into a well-behaved one and was one of the foremost ‘Kumkis' of the Tamil Nadu forest department that was involved in capturing several elephants.

'Moorthy' was a gigantic elephant at 9.5 m and weighing 4.5 tonnes.

The post-mortem will be conducted at the Theppakadu elephant rehabilitation camp and the elephant would be cremated later in the day.

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Published: 15 Oct 2023, 11:52 AM
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