World Elephant Day 2022: PM Modi calls to minimise man-animal conflict, commits to jumbo conservation

World Elephant Day was co-founded by Patricia Sims, a Canadian film-maker, with the Elephant Reintroduction Foundation of Thailand, an initiative of HM Queen Sirikit.

World Elephant Day 2022
Around 4.15 lakh African elephants are still left in the wild, according to the World Wide Fund For Nature. (Reuters)

World Elephant Day: Every year, thousands of elephants are killed in India — by electrocution, accidents with trains, or man-animal conflicts. The scenario is not much different across the globe. World Elephant Day is observed on August 12 every year to raise awareness about their plight, the need to protect them, and the measure that can be taken to ensure their survival.

Also Read | Flood warning for Delhi! Yamuna level nears ‘danger’ mark

Elephants are faced with an existential crisis, from illegal ivory trade to increased conflict with humans over habitats. On World Elephant Day, 2022, FE Online takes a look at the history and significance of the occasion and some facts about these majestic creatures.

WORLD ELEPHANT DAY HISTORY

World Elephant Day was co-founded by Patricia Sims, a Canadian film-maker, with the Elephant Reintroduction Foundation of Thailand, an initiative of Queen Sirikit. The first-ever celebration was observed on 12 August, 2012. Since then, the day has been celebrated every year.

WORLD ELEPHANT DAY SIGNIFICANCE

World Elephant Day plays an important role in creating awareness about the issues that plague the existence of these gentle animals across the globe. Elephants face multiple threats to their existence — from poaching and illegal wildlife trade to habitat destruction.

Animal rights activists call for creating a sustainable environment for the animals where they can thrive.

PM MODI’S MESSAGE ON WORLD ELEPHANT DAY, 2022

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on the occasion, called for commitment to protect elephants. He tweeted: “On #WorldElephantDay, reiterating our commitment to protect the elephant. You would be happy to know that India houses about 60% of all Asian elephants. The number of elephant reserves has risen in the last 8 years. I also laud all those involved in protecting elephants.”

Also Read | Good News! Modi govt removes airfare limit, flyers may soon get cheaper tickets

He wrote in another tweet: “The successes in elephant conservation must be viewed in context of the larger efforts underway in India to minimise human-animal conflict, and integrating local communities and their traditional wisdom in furthering environmental consciousness.”

FACTS ABOUT ELEPHANTS

— There are three species of elephants — African Forest, African Savanna (bush), and Asian. The animals can be differentiated by their ears and trunks. African elephants are larger. Their ears are also larger and shaped like Africa.

— Around 4.15 lakh African elephants are still left in the wild, according to the World Wide Fund For Nature.

— Asian elephants have witnessed a 50% decline in their population in the past 75 years. Their numbers now vary between 20,000 and 40,000 in the wild.

— Elephants can live up to 60-70 years in the wild.

— The animals are highly intelligent creatures, similar to apes and dolphins, and are capable of showing emotions such as empathy, grief, and compassion.

Get live Share Market updates and latest India News and business news on Financial Express. Download Financial Express App for latest business news.

Photos