An elephant living in the wild has a lifespan of about 60 years. Raju, the elephant, had been living in captivity for 50 years! He had been sold a staggering 27 times! Raju had been captured when he was a baby and for him, this life was normal. But, he had lost his will to live. When he was found, he was covered in his own blood, the spiked shackles on his legs were digging into his skin.
Raju was also malnourished and living off of handouts from people who happened to walk by. Wildlife SOS, a North London based charity, found out about Raju and intervened. Wildlife experts, ten veterinarians, 6 policemen, and 20 forestry department officers set out to rescue the gentle giant in the middle of the night to avoid a scene.
As the team was working, they noticed tears running down Raju’s face! Did the elephant actually understand that he was being set free? The only problem left to deal with was Raju’s owner, who came out and started shouting.
All the yelling made Raju upset, which could be dangerous to the rescuers. The team managed to get the shackles cut off, and Raju was whisked away to a sanctuary where other elephants live.
The other elephants woke up as the team arrived, and seemed happy to have another friend! Raju will undergo some rehabilitation to learn that people don’t all hurt him, it may take some time.
But, Raju is safe and will live out his life without being chained to the ground!
Share away, people.