The famed tusker, elephant king of Guruvayur Sree Krishna temple, Padmanabhan, died on Wednesday. The elephant, known as Gajarajaratnam, aged 84 was unwell for last one month. Padmanabhan’s demise is a big loss for devotees and elephant lovers.
Padmanabhan was a celebrity ever since he was donated to the temple in January 1954.
Since then he was the main attraction of the temple festival and the tusker was considered as a symbol of divine grace. He carried the thidamabhu (miniature of the presiding deity) during the temple festival in Guruvayur for more than five decades.
It is his unique and sharp features and the calm and obedient nature which made Padmanabhan a favourite for elephant lovers. He never created any untoward incidents during festivals. The elephant has a Facebook page launched by his fans.
He has been the main attraction during the famed Thrissur Pooram and he has the highest fee for procession in Kerala. The fee for getting Padmanabhan for a temple festival was around Rs.2.25 lakhs.
The Guruvayur Devaswom and All Kerala Elephant Owners Association have honoured the elephant for its long and unique service. Guruvayur devaswom has 59 elephants at its elephant stable named Punnathurkotta....