With so many around us spending time in quarantine or simply working from home, the sense of loneliness has never been so acute. And probably because we understand the feeling of being lonely to some extent now, it is so much more easier to empathise with Kaavan, famous for being called as the “loneliest elephant in the world.”
A lonely elephant is truly a heart wrenching sight and it has been lonely for over 35 years now, living life in a run-down zoon in Islamabad, Pakistan. But finally, life seems to be looking up for Kaavan. Veterinarians with the animal aid group Four Paws International have approved him for travel, probably to an elephant sanctuary in Cambodia.
This relocation did not just happen – it took years of work by animal rights groups and celebrities, including Cher, fighting for Kaavan’s cause. Sadly, he has developed a lot of issues, which will take time to get better – apart from being overweight and other physiological issues, he has developed psychological issues too. Absence of a partner has resulted in Kaavan becoming incredibly bored and he has developed stereotypical behavior where he swooshes his head and trunk from side to side for hours.
Kaavan was a gift from Sri Lanka to Pakistan in 1985 and he had come with his companion, Saheli. They lived together from 1990 till 2012, when Saheli died and Kaavan was plunged into sadness and loneliness.
Hope they are able to rehabilitate him in Cambodia and at least in the last few years of his life, he lives a happier life.