Jumbo gets freedom from temple; to head home

Masini acted out violently several times; in May, she trampled her mahout to death

Masini’s freedom came in the form of an order by the Madurai bench of the Madras High Court which was hearing a petition seeking her transfer from a temple to an elephant camp in Theppakadu in the Nilgiris. (Image for representation)

Masini, a female elephant that behaved violently after being detached from her herd, will now go back to her home – Mudumalai forests in the Nilgiris – after a gap of two years.

Masini’s freedom came in the form of an order by the Madurai bench of the Madras High Court which was hearing a petition seeking her transfer from a temple to an elephant camp in Theppakadu in the Nilgiris.

After having been forcibly separated from her friends, Masini was donated to the Mariamman Temple in Samayapuram near Tiruchirapalli in 2016 by the then chief minister J Jayalalithaa. Dejected at being separated, the temple elephant behaved violently many times and Masini’s desperation reached a crescendo in May when she trampled her mahout to death.   

Majority of well-known temples in Tamil Nadu have elephants and they become the centre of attraction for pilgrims.

After the incident, animal rights activist Antony Clement Rubin moved the Madurai bench seeking transfer of Masini, currently at a Veterinary Hospital and Research Institute, to Mudumalai. Considering the submission made by the dean of Veterinary College and Research Institute, a division bench of Justices M M Sundresh and N Satish Kumar ordered transportation of the elephant to her earlier habitat and continuation of treatment.

The case has been posted for hearing after three weeks.

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Jumbo gets freedom from temple; to head home

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