Elephant’s ‘bony body’ hidden under costume during Sri Lankan festival


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An elephant was put on display at a Sri Lankan festival, but its old, bony frame was covered by a costume, wildlife advocates said.

Images of 70-year-old elephant Tikiri's frail frame were shared on Facebook by the Save Elephant Foundation, a charity dedicated to protecting Asian elephants.

Tikiri's frail frame was shown on Facebook by the Save Elephant Foundation in Thailand.

Tikiri's frail frame was shown on Facebook by the Save Elephant Foundation in Thailand.Credit:Facebook, Save Elephant Foundation

Tikiri was from the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic in Kandy and was paraded during the Perahera Festival, one of the oldest Buddhist festivals in Sri Lanka held in July and August.

"She is one of the 60 elephants who must work in the service of the Perahera Festival in Sri Lanka this year," the foundation wrote.


"Tikiri joins in the parade early every evening until late at night every night for ten consecutive nights, amidst the noise, the fireworks, and smoke.

"She walks many kilometers every night so that people will feel blessed during the ceremony. No one sees her bony body or her weakened condition, because of her costume.

"No one sees the tears in her eyes, injured by the bright lights that decorate her mask, no one sees her difficulty to step as her legs are short shackled while she walks.

"For a ceremony, all have the right to belief as long as that belief does not disturb or harm another.Read More – Source