THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Comptroller and Auditor General report released on Friday indicted the state government and the Guruvayur Devaswom for not arranging stables for elephants in the devaswom yard. The report said the state government exercising power under Section 64(2) of the Act, notified the Kerala Captive Elephants (Management and Maintenance) Rules, 2012, to address the problem of ill-treatment of captive elephants and to ensure their proper upkeep and management.
Rule 3 provided for proper housing of the elephant. But a site visit to the elephant camp, ‘aanakotta’, of the Guruvayur Devaswom has revealed the aanakotta has 51 captive elephants, while there are only 15 stables, each capable of accommodating one elephant.
It was also observed the rest of the 36 elephants were kept in the open yard. Though the additional chief secretary (Forest and Wildlife) directed the devaswom on July 21, 2016, to construct shelters for all elephants within a month, only 10 sheds have been constructed even after a year. Thus, the directive under Rule 3 regarding proper housing of the captive elephants are not adhered to by the devaswom. The government submitted inspections are carried out to ensure compliance with Kerala Captive Elephants (Management and Maintenance) Rule 2012.