'India houses about 60% of all Asian elephants', tweets PM Modi


India houses about 60 per cent of all Asian elephants, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted on Friday to mark the World Elephant Day. “On World Elephant Day, reiterating our commitment to protect the elephant. You would be happy to know that India houses about 60% of all Asian elephants," the prime minister said.

"The number of elephant reserves has risen in the last eight years. I also laud all those involved in protecting elephants," he further added, registering India's resolve to protect elephants.

In a subsequent tweet, the Prime Minister said that the successes in elephant conservation must be viewed in the context of the larger efforts underway in India to minimise human-animal conflict and integrate local communities and their traditional wisdom in furthering environmental consciousness.

Apart from PM Modi, Union minister for environment, forest and climate change Bhupender Yadav tweeted, "Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened. A day to rekindle our love for our jumbos and renew our pledge to protect them and their habitat."

Every year, August 12 is observed as World Elephant Day. It was launched in 2012 to bring the world's attention to the urgent plight of Asian and African elephants.

According to World Elephant Day's website, the day is celebrated to urge people to help conserve and protect elephants from the numerous threats they face including poaching, habitat loss, human-elephant conflict and mistreatment in captivity. The website points out that the elephant population has dropped by 62 per cent over the last decade and they can be mostly extinct by the end of the next decade.

When it comes to Asian Elephants, the website said that one out of every three Asian elephants in the world is in captivity. On the other hand, an estimated 100 African elephants are killed daily by poachers seeking ivory, meat and body parts, leaving only 400,000 such elephants remaining.

(Except for the headline and the pictorial description, this story has not been edited by THE DEN staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)