Mumbai’s last privately owned Elephant, Laxmi, dies at owner’s home

An animal activist revealed that she was not keeping well for quite a while and was never taken to an elephant shelter since five years

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Mumbai has lost its last elephant with Laxmi, who passed away on Thursday morning in Dahisar at her owner’s home. The forest department lifted the animal with a crane and put her in a tempo for the post-mortem after she was declared dead at 7:30 AM.

Her body’s post-mortem was conducted by the state forest officials at Kora Kendra in Malad on Friday.

The 48-year-old elephant was alleged to be held captive. Animal activist Sunish Subramanian told that they had complained to the state forest department about several privately owned animals, including Laxmi, five years ago. Expressing his sorrow for her death, he said that Laxmi was not keeping well for quite a while and was not sent to any proper elephant shelter in the last five years. According to Sunil, she was exploited by her owners to beg on the roads and was also made to work at film shootings.

Earlier, the Bombay High Court had also directed the state authorities to ban the entry of elephant into Mumbai, Navi Mumbai and Thane regions, as pachyderms are often made to beg on the streets. In spite of the order, another elephant, Paru, owned by the same Dahisar based family had died at a Film City shoot in suburban Mumbai in October 2016.

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