- Sri Lanka -
The nonprofit organization ‘Moving Animals’ has announced on their Facebook page the passing of Kanakota, a beautiful and young elephant victim of a tourist attraction.
Kanakota was only 18 years old and should have lived his life free in his natural habitat instead of having heavy seats strapped to his back to transport people up and down daily.
Too many innocent and helpless animals are ‘prisoners’ of these places.
They are ridden by people or drugged to be kept unresponsive so that tourists can take a selfie, and much more.
An investigation run by the organization in 2018 on the popular tourist trail in Sigiriya, revealed that: “Elephants were kept tightly chained and were under the constant threat of a sharp bullhook. They were forced up and down the same busy roads in the relentless heat, whilst carrying groups of tourists sitting on a heavy and painful seat.”
Moving Animals reports that Kanakota collapsed from exhaustion after giving back-to-back tourist rides in the relentless Sri Lankan heat. He never woke up!
Although an investigation into Kanakota’s death is underway, the problem is that Sri Lanka’s animal welfare laws have not been updated since 1907.
According to Moving Animals, anyone found guilty of animal cruelty is fined 100 rupees (64 cents/50p).
This is simply appalling.
The current laws are not fit to deal with the ongoing reality.
Sri Lanka is a popular tourist destination and inevitably that leads to tourists engaging in attractions available in the country, including riding elephants.
The law is not going to change overnight but our behavior and respect for life can help change the life of animals and end their senseless and unnecessary suffering.
*Voice For Us firmly believes that people contribute to animals’ abuse by visiting zoos, circuses, theme parks with animal shows, or ride animals as part of tourist attractions.*
Pictures via Metro