Kaavan, an elephant who spent more than 30 years of his life in chains at a Pakistani zoo will finally be able to love free! According to reports, the elephant will be released and sent to a 25,000-acre animal sanctuary in Cambodia, Sri Lanka next month. Also Read - World Elephant Day 2020: An Urgent Need to Protect And Preserve Our 'Gentle & Giant' Friends
The elephant spent his entire life in the Maraghazar Zoo in Pakistan’s capital, Islamabad. Campaigning for his release, animals rights activists claimed that he was badly mistreated, kept in chains and exhibited symptoms of mental illness.
His keepers forced him to entertain guests and carry children on his back for long hours. What made matters worse that he was staying alone as his only companion in the zoo also passed away.
For years, animal rights campaigners and celebrities petitioned for the freedom of the elephant.
Finally, after 5 years, the court ruled in May that it was appropriate to free Kaavan and ordered him to be relocated from the Islamabad Zoo to a sanctuary where he can roam free.
“Neither is there adequate facilities nor resources to provide living conditions that would meet the behavioral, social and physiological needs of the animals,” said Chief Justice Athar Minallah.
After the court order, the Pakistan government gave its consent to Free The Wild, an animal welfare organisation, to relocate Kaavan to a sanctuary in Cambodia.
The court also ordered dozens of other animals, including brown bears, lions and birds, to be relocated temporarily while the zoo improves its standards.