Writ petition filed calling to protect Myan Kumara

A writ petition has been filed in the Court of Appeal seeking an order directing the authorities to release the elephant named “Myan Kumara” to the Udawalawe Elephant Transfer Home from the Bellanwila Temple, until he is released back to the wild.

The petitioner stated that the baby elephant Myan Kumara (Myan Prince) was donated to the Bellanwila Temple by the Myanmar Government in 2013.

This petition had been filed by Attorney-at-law Nagananda Kodituwakku naming Director General of Wildlife Conservation Department, the IGP and the Chief Incumbent of the Bellanwila Temple as respondents.

The petitioner said the elephant calf is chained tightly to a tree and a video has recently surfaced of him being beaten by his mahout in a cruel manner.

The petitioner said that the second respondent IGP has failed to perform his duties over a complaint urging to take necessary legal action under Sections 2 and 3 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Ordinance.

The petitioner stated that in or around January, 2020, the Government of Myanmar had appealed to Sri Lanka to notify those concerned to stop the abuse of this elephant.

The Myanmar Embassy in Colombo also asked the Sri Lanka authorities to punish those who harm the elephant as seen in videos uploaded in the social media, the petitioner further added. This petition is to be taken up for support on March 8.

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