Gundlupet: The nine-month-old elephant calf, which was rescued by the Forest Department personnel after a selfie-frenzy mob separated it from its mother on Jan.1 and being treated by the veterinarians for exhaustion, died yesterday.
The calf had come to the border of Kurubarahundi village near Omkar Forest Range coming under Bandipur Reserve Forest along with its mother and two other elephants in search of food. While a group of villagers who saw these elephants pelted stones on them in a bid to drive them back to the forest, another group began to click photos and began to make noise besides moving forward towards the elephants. Though an elephant made attempts to charge at the villagers, the villagers again pelted stones and rushed towards the elephants resulting in the elephants moving towards the forest leaving the calf behind. Soon, some villagers caught the already exhausted calf and began to click selfies though the calf was crying for its mother. Soon, the Forest Dept. personnel rushed to the spot and rescued the calf and brought it in a jeep to the Forest Office where it was treated by the veterinarian.
The Forest Staff had planned to leave the calf on the route where its mother left and keep a watch on it, but the health condition of the calf deteriorated further and veterinarian Dr. Nagaraju administered injections and IV fluids to help the calf recover but in vain. The calf breathed its last later in the day.
RFO Naveen Kumar said that the carcass of the calf would be cremated after conducting post-mortem and discussing with senior officials. Meanwhile, the mother and two elephants, which did not enter the forest, were seen at the border of the forest waiting for the calf.