In 2012 the 22 years old female elephant, named Saheli, died in Islamabad zoo, after she contracted an infection in one of her legs that, due to alleged negligence of the animal keepers spread, affecting her whole body, and resulted in her death.
The 31-year-old Asian elephant, “Kaavan”, has been kept in solitary confinement and chained around his legs since his long-term companion Saheli, gifted by the government of Bangladesh in early 90s to Pakistan – died in May 2012. Kaavan was brought from Sri Lanka in 1985 when he was one years old.
The elephant was thought to have become depressed after the death of Saheli. To cater to the issue, the zoo management thought it better to chain all his four legs instead of providing the elephant medical treatment or to find him a companion.
Animal lovers and rights activists have voiced series concerns over the state-of-affairs at the Islamabad Zoo, officially known as Marghazar Zoo
In the meantime elephant advocates from all over the world have been trying to relocate Kavaan to a sanctuary abroad,because it is obvious the Zoo can't give him proper care. His enclosure is very poor: too small, no shadow, no enrichments, no grass, no sandpiles.
NOW THEY ARE GOING TO BRING IN TWO FEMALE BABY ELEPHANTS FROM SRI LANKA AND SEND KAVAAN BACK TO THAT COUNTRY, WITH NO GUARANTEE OF A BETTER AND SAFE FUTURE FOR HIM. THIS WAS NOT WHAT HAD BEEN NEGOCIATED ABOUT.
THE DEAL IS: NO MORE ELEPHANTS TO ISLAMABAD ZOO AND KAVAAN NEEDS TO GO TO A SANCTUARY (CAMBODJA WILDLIFE SANCTUARY)
CDA Chairman Maroof Afzal held a meeting which was attended by experts in wildlife and environment including the WWF, Wildlife Department Punjab, the animal society and Lahore Zoo some time ago.
The experts were asked to give their opinions about what to do for Kavaan.
The elephant was recently unchained after criticism from world animal rights campaigners on social media.
At the meeting the CDA ruled out sending Kaavan to a sanctuary and decided animals will be provided with more facilities and care.
Member Environment CDA Syed Mustafain Kazmi even said Kavaan was healthy and was enjoying life at the zoo.
However since he was unchained, for some reason chains have been putting on again and for no reason every now and then, he is still being beaten by his carer. There is evidence about this in numerous pictures.
End of May 2016, Islamabad volunteers of FREE KAVAAN reported: No fans, no proper shed, no water in the pool. Nothing to take refuge from the scorching heat!!! It gets as hot as 43°C. Our poor boy stands in that oven hot steel shed... Despite of constant requests, visits and meetings, the conditions only seem to improve for a few days and then their ill treatment starts again. CDA shame on you.!
NOW WITH THIS GOING ON FOR KAVAAN AND IN THE BAD CONDITIONS HE HAS TO LIVE THIS ZOO IS GOING TO BRING IN NEW FEMALE BABY ELEPHANTS FROM SRI LANKA! WE SAY: NO! NO NEW ELEPHANTS! AND KAVAAN MUST BE RELOCATED TO A REAL SANCTUARY ABROAD AND NOTHING ELSE! CAMBODJA WILDLIFE SANCTUARY HAS ANNOUNCED SEVERAL TIMES THAT THEY WOULD GLADLY TAKE KAVAAN IN.
PLEASE DO WHAT IS RIGHT.