Success: Gajraj the Elephant Freed From Chains After 50 Years

Target: Bhagat Sarjan, Principle Chief Conservator of Forests of Maharashtra Forest Department

Goal: Praise the Maharashtra Forest Department for unchaining Gajraj and bringing him to an accredited sanctuary.

Gajraj is an elderly elephant in his mid-sixties that was taken from the wild at 12 and trapped in captivity ever since. Thankfully, after over 50 years of being chained, Gajraj has finally been freed and is being brought to a specialized care center for elephants. This is in part thanks to petitions like this one at ForceChange.

For the past 50 years, Gajraj has been chained on a small slab of concrete. In the wild, elephants will roam and play for most of the day. Gajraj could do nothing but stand there, which has lead to many physical and mental issues. He has been seen swaying excessively and showing other signs of excessive stress. He also has overgrown nails and has developed abscesses where the chain was constantly rubbing against his skin. These are only the issues that can be seen. Standing on hard surfaces like concrete for extended periods of time can also lead to arthritis and other foot problems in elephants.

Thankfully, this is now over for Gajraj. His injuries and issues will be treated and he will finally be able to live the life nature intended at a sanctuary. Sign this petition and praise the Maharashtra Forest Department for finally bringing freedom to Gajraj.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Mr. Sarjan,

After over 50 years of being chained to a small slab on concrete, Gajraj the elephant is finally experiencing freedom again. Thank you for your compassion and dedication to helping this innocent animal.

It is believed Gajraj was taken from the wild at 12 years old and has been held in captivity ever since. Captivity is extremely detrimental to these incredibly intelligent creatures. Gajraj has shown stress indicators like excessive swaying and suffers from physical ailments including, but not limited to, overgrown nails and painful abscesses. Thankfully, these issues are now being treated after years of neglect.

Thank you for releasing Gajraj from his chains and rescuing him from a life in captivity. He has so much to experience and I am ecstatic he is finally being brought to a sanctuary where he will be surrounded by sunshine, nature, and friends.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Michael Nichols

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19 Comments

  1. Linda Hilty-Tuttle says:

    I’d say thank you, but – WHAT THE HELL TOOK YOU SO LONG???
    It’s hard to thank an animal abuser for FINALLY FINALLY doing the right thing!

  2. What stupid comments, it doesn’t say they knew 50 years ago that he was chained and mistreated. …and you can’t just go and take animals from their owners,it all takes time!

    • Renata Bartoli, PhD says:

      “Their owners”!? That says it all: you own objects or slaves. The time when humans considered animals their slaves is over, apart from some human dinosaurs still around that believe it. How can you consider a majestic animal like an elephant !your slave”? Disgusting. And yes, 50 years is a VEEEERY long time to realise what was going on.

      • Exactly – “owners.” A big “tell” for that rampant, and WRONG, arbitrary “hierarchical” perspective that unconsciously places the HUMAN animal above all other life forms. Talk about “STUPID”…

  3. Margrit Simons says:

    Thank you so much for your compassion!
    Margrit Simons

  4. Jaime Perez says:

    It’s about time that this poor elephant was released! And yes, I agree, what took so long to free him??

  5. I HAD to check this out for myself, since the sanctuary wasn’t even named, to ensure it really is a real sanctuary.

    Photos and history of Gajraj’s abysmal story and eventual transport to the sanctuary here:
    http://www.onegreenplanet.org/news/gajraj-the-elephant-is-going-to-sanctuary/

    Also a link on that page to the “Elephant Conservation and Care Center” where he FINALLY went.

    My gawd, though…’nice’ royal family in India, allowing such horrible neglect and exploitation to continue unabated for 50 years, just because he’d been a “present” to the queen…

  6. THIS HAS TAKEN FAR TO LONG TO RESCUE THIS POOR ELEPHANT AND MANY LIKE HIM. ELEPHANTS SHOULD NEVER NEVER BE CRUELLY EXPLOITED BY LOW LIFE SCUM BAGS FOR GAIN…THESE WICKED EVIL PEOPLE WHO HAVE DONE THIS TO HIM SHOULD SPEND THE REST OF THEIR LIVES IN CHAINS AND SEE HOW THEY FEEL. THERE HAS TO BE A CHANGE IN LAW THESE BEAUTIFUL ANIMALS SHOULD NEVER BE OWNED BY ANYBODY THEY HAVE A RIGHT TO BE FREE…THE PERPETRATORS WHO DO THIS ALONG WITH THE GOVERNMENTS OF THESE COUNTRIES THAT ALLOW IT ARE NO BETTER THAN THE EVIL PEOPLE WHO DO THIS, THE GOVERNMENT SHOULD MAKE SURE ALL ELEPHANTS ARE SET FREE AND THOSE THAT HAVE BEEN INCARCERATED SHOULD BE IN A SANCTUARY TO ROAM AND BE CARED FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES, ELEPHANTS WILL NEVER NEVER GET OVER THIS, I TRULY WISH EVERYTHING BAD AND PAINFUL FOR THESE LESS THAN HUMAN SCUM BAGS WHO DO AND HAVE DONE THIS HEINOUS CRIME OF CRUELTY AND THAT THEY SUFFER FOR THE REST OF THEIR MISERABLE LIVES J.P

  7. Nena Miller says:

    Now free them all…and don’t wait fifty years!

  8. Rosslyn Osborne says:

    Thanks DM for the added info.
    Yes, it is such an insult for Royalty to give away a gift, but this did take far too long for this to finally happen for this beautiful animal.
    Why? Why? Why.. did they keep him is such deplorable condition? These people are supposed to be learned and affluent people, but took no interest in allowing this animal any consideration for his life time care and welfare!
    No excuses for this heinous treatment, but thanks that you finally saw fit albeit, after much pressure, to give this elephant a little of his life back.

  9. kay allan says:

    i can only hope that this dear creature lives for a good time happy and free. thank you.

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