Pradeep Pattanayak

In yet another bad news for the wildlife lovers, female elephant ‘Prema’ in Nandankanan Zoo in Bhubaneswar has become ill. Her treatment is underway, said zoo sources. 

The jumbo has become sick due to a wound near her nail which is taking time to heal, it was learnt. 

Deputy director of Nandankanan Zoo, Sanjit Kumar, who was contacted over phone, said, “It is common for elephants to have such wounds in their feet in old age. Prema has such a wound. It is not very serious type. Her treatment is underway.”

According to a source, ailing Prema is being treated with antibiotic medicine. Soon a expert team from the Odisha University of Agriculture and Technology (OUAT ) will join the zoo’s own team. 

The ailing pachyderm is presently able to stand on its legs and takes food properly. 

At a time when the animal lovers are seriously concerned about the elephant death cases recently reported from Athagarh in Cuttack district, the news of another jumbo in Nandankanan becoming ill has left them worried. 

Notably, a tusker which was found with gunshot injuries near a rivulet in Narasinghapur forest range under Athagarh forest division in Cuttack district succumbed to injuries on June 14, after struggling for life for eight days. The same forest division also reported three more elephant deaths. 

Meanwhile, a Special Investigation Team (SIT) has been formed to probe the death and recovery of skeletal remains of elephants.