In the annual Thrissur Pooram, being over two hundreds year old famous festival commonly held at different parts of State of Kerala, the parading of Elephants is denied interference with by the both honourable High Court and Government of Kerala. The festival is set to be held on 29th April, in all its pomp and glory tomorrow.
Hon’ble High Court’s division bench, comprising Justice A. M. Shaffique and Justice P. V. Asha decided not to interfere in the Public Interest Litigation- PIL which was filed by the a Group of New Delhi, namely, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. And the said Bench has posted the matter for its next stage on 20th of May this year after the vacation when the High Court reopens.
It was sought in the present PIL by the Petitioner that the directions to be issued to the State and Central Government that they should ensure that there will be no parade of Elephants held during the Thrissur Pooram, festivities without there being a Permission issued by the Animal Welfare Board of India- AWBI.
However, also the Government of the State of Kerala also made the fact clear that the said Government will also not interfere in the parading of Elephant in the said Thrissur Pooram, being it is age- old traditional convention and this will also serve as the relief to the Organisers of said Pooram festivals.
It is also told by Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan, Kerala Forest Minister, to the satisfaction of the Organisers that the, the Thrissur Pooram will be observed with all conventions thereof including parading of elephants.
However, if there appear any complaints with regards to the upkeep of the animals while being used under the festival, the same can be brought to the notice of the concerned Government and the said Government will thereafter look into such complaints.
Further, Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan, Kerala Forest Minister added that that there are various guidelines which were already issued by the Government relating to the maintenance of Captive Elephants in the State of Kerala.
The Animal Rights Group, being the Heritage Animal Task Force’s Chief V. K. Venkatachalam which was campaigning against parading of Elephants for various such temple festivities, has said that their fight as such would continued by them and will move to the honourable Apex Court of India, if there will appear any occurrence of violations during the pooram tomorrow.
by Faim Khalilkhan Pathan.