Elephants are adorable creatures. Emperor Charlemagne (Founder of the Holy Roman Empire) was very fond of a pet elephant called Abul-Abbas. In the Medieval times, elephants were rigorously used in violent battles.
Today elephants are threatened by man and machines. In several parts of India, especially the Dooars and Terai region in West Bengal; there are numerous reports stating that they have been victims of railway engines as they attempt to cross the railway tracks. Apart from this, elephants are hunted by poachers for their tusks, meat, leather and other parts of the body.
Even some of the world’s largest elephants named Satao and Mountain Bull have been victims of poaching. Under the wheels of deforestation, elephants’ proximity seems too perilous resulting in man-elephant conflict. Hence, they must be cared for, protected and conserved in their own habitat. It is for this reason August 12 has been earmarked to create awareness throughout India and the world about the threats faced by them. Canadian filmmaker, Patricia Sims is credited for flagging this day as elephant Day in 2011.
The African elephants numbered around a few million in the beginning of the 20th century. But today their numbers have shrunk, it ranges between 450, 000 to 700,000. As the conflict between elephants and humans become inevitable due to shrinking forest areas, nearly 80 elephants are killed every year in India on an average. Up to 655 elephant deaths in the last eight years is really a concern for India.