- The World Elephant Day is celebrated every year on 12th of August, with the aim to acknowledge Elephants’ significance in our ecosystem.
- It emphasizes on raising the awareness of the threats that elephants face in their daily lives. Whether poaching, mistreatment in captivity, or habitat loss, every single factor plays a role in animal abuse.
- Elephants are considered sacred in many cultures and are essential for maintaining a healthy ecosystem.
- Elephants also encourage biodiversity.
- They are an intelligent species, they have the biggest brain of any land animal.
- The elephant population has reduced by 50% over the past 75 years.
- The current population estimates indicate that there are about 50,000 -60000 Asian elephants in the world.
- More than 60% of the population is held in India.
- The campaign World Elephant Day was initiated in 2012 to bring awareness to the disturbing situations of African and Asian elephants.
- The objective of this campaign is to create a sustainable environment where animals are not exploited and taken care of.
- It was first observed by Canadian filmmakers Michael Clark and Patricia Sims with the Thailand-based Elephant Reintroduction Foundation.
- In 2012, Patricia Sims founded an organization called the World Elephant Society.
- The organization has succeeded to create awareness about the dangers confronted by the elephants and the inevitability to protect them globally.
Issues Related to Elephants in India
- India has the largest number of wild Asian Elephants, estimated at 29,964 according to 2017 census by Project Elephant, i.e., about 60% of the species’ global population.
- The friction between humans and elephants termed Human-Elephant Conflict (HEC) which occurs mainly over space and is a major concern across the country for governments, conservationists and people living close to the wild animals.
- Loss of natural habitat and fragmentation have been bringing wild elephants closer to human habitations, sparking these conflicts.
- Over 500 humans are killed in encounters with elephants annually, and crops and property worth millions are also damaged.
- Many elephants are also killed in retaliation due to conflict.
SOURCE: THE HINDU,THE ECONOMIC TIMES,MINT