Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Oct 4:
The Nandankanan Zoological Park (NZP) in Odisha’s capital city today celebrated Elephant Day as part of the Wildlife Week celebration.
The eight elephants at the zoo were given a special treatment to mark the occasion.
Early morning, the keepers at the zoo bathed the elephants and adorned them with specially designed appliqué apparel and the mahouts took them out on a walk on the animal park premises.
The jumbos were then offered bananas, coconuts, sugarcane and other fruits by the zoo management. Visitors to the zoological park also offered fruits to the pachyderms.
“We have around 2,000 elephants in our state. Elephant is one the most important wildlife species. The call of the day is to protect them and protect their habitat. If they are allowed to live in peace, we live in peace,” said principal secretary Forest department Rajkumar Sharma speaking to reporters at the zoo on the occasion.
“The purpose of observing this day is to create awareness among the people for conservation of elephants and their habita,” said Sudarshan Panda, director Nandankanan Zoological Park.
Nandankanan, which receives close to 30 lakh visitors annually, has been celebrating Elephant Day on October 4 since 2005.