After being held in chains and being abused for about 50 years in India, Raju was finally rescued by the daring team of Wildlife SOS that travelled all the way from North London to make this rescue happen. Raju’s life consisted of being forced to hold out his trunk to beg for coins from passers-by and merely surviving on paper and plastic for his empty stomach. He was kept wearing spiked shackles that made his legs bleed as well.
But with the help of a 10-man team of vets and wildlife experts, as well as 20 forestry department officers and 6 policemen, Raju was then rescued at midnight from the Uttar Pradesh area in India. Pooja Binepal, the charity’s spokesperson, said that it was such an emotional plight for the whole team and especially for Raju.
It was so emotional that Raju actually ended up shedding some tears after realizing that freedom was almost at his reach after such a long time of intolerable cruelty and abuse.
Wildlife SOS founder Kartick Satyanarayan said that it was as if Raju knew that they were there to help him by making the effort of moving even with his shackles on, since they had to decide to remove them once they got him to safety. He’ll be rehabilitated and cared for in a sanctuary alongside other elephants who have suffered the same fate.
Wildlife SOS has launched a campaign to raise £10,000 to help Raju begin his new life in a new enclosure with his adoptive family. To know more about how you can help, visit http://www.wildlifesos.org for more details.