Jan 22, Colombo: Environmentalists of Sri Lanka protest the donating of elephants from the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage to third parties.
Environmentalist Sanjeewa Chamikara said the programme carried out by the government to hand over elephant calves from Pinnawala Orphanage to businesspersons should be immediately stopped.
The first elephant calf was born in 1985 at the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage. Since its inception in 1975, 67 elephant calves have been born in the Orphanage and 12 of these calves have been given to various people in 2011 alone.
Environmentalist Nayanaka Ranwella added that while only 67 calves were born in the Orphanage, 85 calves had been given to the private sector for adoption.
The orphanage originally founded in order to afford care and protection to the many orphaned elephants found injured in various accidents in the jungle has its own generation born in captivity now.
Pinnawala orphanage which shelters the largest herd of captive elephants in the world is a major tourist attraction in Sri Lanka.