Court Rules That Sunder WILL Be Free!
  • 07
  • Apr

Court Rules That Sunder WILL Be Free!

We have some excellent news today that is bound to bring a smile to the face of anyone who has heard the story of Sunder, a young Indian elephant who has spent the last six years chained up in a temple, miserable and alone, and endured beatings and abuse.

Today, in a landmark judgment, the Honourable Bombay High Court ruled in favour of PETA India by upholding the implementation of the Joint Secretary (Forests), Government of Maharashtra’s order of August 2012 to release Sunder to a sanctuary. This is the result we’ve all been hoping for, and it’s a major victory in the 21-month-long campaigns by PETA and our international affiliates to free Sunder – supported by Paul McCartney, Pamela Anderson, many well-known Bollywood stars and more than 17,000 PETA UK supporters who wrote to Indian officials calling for Sunder’s release.

Sunder’s shocking beatings have been caught on videotape, and veterinarians and elephant experts who examined him found him scarred, wounded and chained so tightly that he couldn’t lie down. The Jyotiba temple came into possession of Sunder in 2007, but after constant chaining and beatings came to light, Maharashtra Minister of Forests Dr Patangrao Kadam and the Project Elephant division of the Ministry of Environment and Forests issued orders for Sunder’s release to a sanctuary on 21 August 2012 and 9 November 2012, respectively. However, those orders were never carried out, and Sunder was then whisked away at the behest of the Member of Legislative Assembly Vinay Kore and hidden in an old poultry shed, where he remained chained. In December 2013, PETA India obtained new video footage showing that his mahout was violently beating him.

Now, at long last, it looks like Sunder’s suffering could be over. The next step will be to transfer Sunder to the Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre in Bangalore. PETA India is calling on officials to implement the court’s order quickly, before he can be harmed again.

Thank you to everyone who spoke out for Sunder. Now, all compassionate people can look forward to seeing him finally receive the care and respect that he deserves.

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  1. avatar Kathy Dunn says:

    Please keep us informed as to when Sunder is released and how he is doing. And thank you for your tireless efforts.

  2. avatar Glenda Butler says:

    Great news. It would be great to track his rescue as he’s still not out of danger just yet.

  3. avatar Jane says:

    We keep being told that Sunder is going to be free. We keep being told that the court says Sunder must be released. We keep being told that the fact is SUNDER IS NOT FREE AND NOBODY KNOWS HOW, WHEN OR IF THIS WILL HAPPEN!!!

  4. avatar Cally says:

    Please ensure Sunder is released immediately. He is a precious angel and deserves a wonderful life from now on. May the people that hurt him be punished.

  5. avatar Cecilia Barrie says:

    Can’t wait to see Sunder enjoy freedom …… Please tell me that the people who allowed this to happen are punished.

  6. avatar Joel says:

    This is great news, well done PETA for their hard work. It isn’t over for asunder until he is at a sanctuary, and I hope to see the video of his release very soon. I pray he is not replaced at this “temple” by another poor unfortunate elephant.

  7. avatar Gitte says:

    IS THE ELEPHANT SAFE NOW? Where is it? WHY DONT WE HEAR IF HE IS SAFE???????? Where is he???!!!

  8. avatar MJ says:

    Why no update that in fact Sunder has NOT been released, indeed his freedom is being stopped by Kore, who actually has NO CLAIM on the matter any more – he gave that away, when he gave Sunder away!!


  9. avatar Roger Barton says:

    I have seen Temple Elephants before and they were well cared for i.e. well fed, taken to the river and washed. But obviously this is not so in every case. Sunder’s case must be kept under the spotlight to ensure the release goes ahead – and no other elephant endures this terrible treatment.

  10. avatar Khomenko Mariia says:

    Please ensure Sunder is released immediately. He is a precious angel and deserves a wonderful life from now on. May the people that hurt him be punished.

  11. […] month, PETA India won a court case to get abused elephant Sunder released to a sanctuary. Now, while Sunder waits to be transferred from the temple where he has endured years of beatings […]

  12. avatar Sue Towse says:

    Such good news – please keep us up to date on Sunder’s new life. At least one gentle creature is safe now.
    My concern is for the who knows how many other elephants suffering the same fate? And this in a country that produced Gandhi & Buddha. Where is man’s humanity?

  13. Why hasnt Sunder been moved too his sanctuary! Yu do realise as long as he stays trapped in there the more his .serious leg wound will get worse either it will turn gangrenous and then if it hasnt allready septecemia will set in and that will kill him ! The court has given thbere permission for him too go too the animal sanctuary ! If he isnt moved b doon it will be too late Vee North London!

  14. avatar D.Shanthi says:

    Dear Human Beings,
    Don’t let animals like SUNDER THE ELEPHANT such terrible, heartless, brutal actions on animals.
    Please the Authorities, Do not let those barbaric & brutal persons. They must be punished.
    Oh God Please SAVE such harassed Animals in any nook & corner of the World.
    No Such incidents Should happen, like what destined to SUNDER.
    So called human beings try to behave with basic human qualities with compassion, love & show sympathizes to a mute innocent, orphan & expression less animals.
    Charity will not let those human being, who got participated in heart broken harassing with their lineage.
    Human Community must felt ashamed of their ruthless, merciless actions & bend their head before animal community.
    The world Created not only for Humans and also for mute animals.
    We the human beings, as God’s wish to take care of the mute animals.

  15. avatar Mel says:

    Please update us, is Sunder release or still in their miserable hands??

  16. […] April: The Bombay High Court ruled in favour of PETA India and upheld the order to move Sunder to a […]

  17. Want her free, like they all should be.

  18. She should be free to her natural surroundings.

  19. avatar Raul says:

    NO MORE elephant chained, miserable and alone, and endured beatings and abuse.

  20. avatar miceu says:

    Urgent stop cruelty

  21. avatar miceu says:

    Urgent stpo cruelty

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