From scared little she-elepant trained
for only eight months
to be the pride of the Jambukeswara temple!
This little 9 1/2 year old
she-elephant had only been in the temple for a few weeks. The old
temple elephant had died and she came all the way from the Assam
province. The mahut had trained her in Assam. Finding her easy to
train, it was decided to buy her.
The elephants are strongly connected
to their mahut, and the "relationship" normally lasts for life.
Keeping elephants, training them etc. is enherited from father to
son and is a very respected job.
The elpphant had been used to work with timber the place she was
born, and had been fairly mistreated in her old "job". She had been
very thin at arrival to the Jambukeswara temple, but having her own
doctor, she quickly recovered. Now only a few bruises can be seen.
That's why she was bought for a resonable price. Trained elephants
in India are very expensive.
Living all her life in
the temple, her job to bless people visiting the temple. You give
her a coin. you bow before her and she touches you a few times on
Having seen many small chlidren cry out loud from fres the first
times, the parents are extremely happy for the blessing of the
child. The elepants are very gentle to especially to children.
The elephants are also the main
attraction at festivals, in processions in the temple area and
outside in the city.
Keeping elephants in India often gives
you surprising experiences. One of the more peculiar sights, were on
a drive on the highway in South India. Suddently you can see an
elephant in the middle of the road on it's way to a festival or
helping with work in another town.
"OM gam Ganapataye Namah!"