Kerala High Court Orders 6-Meter Safety Distance for Elephants at Thrissur Pooram

To ensure public safety and mitigate potential incidents, the Kerala High Court has issued a directive stipulating a minimum distance of six meters between elephants and the crowd during the Thrissur Pooram festival.

The court, presided over by Justices Jayasankaran Nambiar and P Gopinath, has placed restrictions on certain events like Theevetti (fire torch) and Chenda Melam that occur during the procession of elephants. However, exceptions are made for the ceremonial lamp positioned in front of the elephant. Additionally, the use of capture belts and goads on elephants has been prohibited to prevent any harm or distress to the animals.

In response to concerns raised by the chief wildlife warden about the high temperatures in the state, a suggestion was made to maintain a distance of 50 meters between elephants and Theevetti. However, after considering practical difficulties raised by Paramekkavu and Thiruvambadi Devaswoms, the court settled on a safety distance of six meters.

Furthermore, the court has mandated a fitness test for elephants scheduled for April 18, a day before the Thrissur Pooram festival. There were also inquiries regarding the participation of a visually impaired elephant named Thechikottukavu Ramachandran. Although initially questioned, it was clarified that Ramachandran is only partially blind, leading the court to grant permission for its participation under strict guidelines to ensure its well-being and safety.

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