Palakkad: The forest officials' decision to retain the name 'Peelandi Chandru' for the elephant caught from Attappadi forests in 2017, which was earlier called by the tribal name 'Peelandi,' has been opposed by activists.
Environmentalist and Youth Congress leader Boban Mattumantha here has filed a complaint with Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, Forest Minister K. Raju and top forest officials over the decision taken by the Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (PCCF) and Chief Wildlife Warden (CWW) on the name.
A controversy had arisen earlier over changing its name from 'Peelandi' to 'Kodanadu Chandrasekharan' after activists in Palakkad and tribals in Attappadi who worship the elephant opposed it.
However, according to PCCF & CWW Surendrakumar, the department would stick to the name 'Peelandi Chandru.'
"Chandru is also a tribal name and we have decided to keep it as a balancing act. It is not an elitist or Sanskrit name either and not a shortform of Chandrasekharan," Surendrakumar told DC.
Boban said that names like Chandrashekaran and Surendran along with other names given to the captive elephants at the four training camps of the department in the state are those of top forest officials in charge of these camps.
"The names of the grandchildren of North Indian officers are also given to the jumbos at these camps. It was also found through an RTI application that there was no criterion for naming the jumbos. My submission is that there has to be certain rules for keeping the original names if necessary. Or else, the department can give numbers for these elephants," Boban noted....