The emaciated 70-year old elephant named ‘Tikiri’, whose photos were widely shared on social media for being walked in the Esala Perahera, was taken back to Kegalle yesterday (14).
The Secretary of Captive Elephant Owners’ Association of Sri Lanka Dharmasiri Karunaratne said the owner of ‘Tikiri’ had walked the elephant in the parade to fulfill a promise made to God Vishnu.
He stressed that ‘Tikiri’ is in a good health condition while refuting the backlash received from social media recently.
He also emphasized that this was not done with the intention of gaining money.
Save Elephant Foundation, set up by Thailand’s “elephant whisperer” Lek Chailert, has shared the photos of ‘Tikiri’ that show every rib in her body and raw-looking skin on her trunk.
Subsequently, it was reported that the ‘Tikiri’ was removed from participating in the remaining parades of Dalada Perahera.