After 50 Years In Chains And Abused, This Elephant Cried When He Was Finally Rescued

This elephant called Raju was held in chains, beaten and abused for over 50 years in the Uttar Pradesh area of India. To fill his stomach, he would sometimes eat plastic, paper or any handouts from passing tourists.

But thankfully after many years of torture and captivity, the elephant was rescued by the North London-based charity Wildlife SOS in a daring midnight operation. When he was being freed from his spiked shackles, the elephant cried.

A team of vets and wildlife experts were joined by 20 forestry department officers and six policemen to rescue Raju from his suffering.

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They found the elephant shackled with spiked chains.

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The spikes dug into his flesh and the wounds were constantly open.

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During the rescue, the team was astounded to see tears rolling down the elephant’s face.It was so incredibly emotional for all of us. We knew in our hearts he realized he was being freed,” the wildlife charity’s spokesman said.

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Elephants aren’t only majestic. Experts said they’re also deeply emotional and intelligent creatures. They cry when overcome with emotion.

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It took the vets about 45 minutes to remove the chains and spikes.

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Raju’s owner tried to prevent the rescue shouting commands to terrify and provoke the elephant. But the rescue team didn’t give up. “We stood our ground and refused to back down,” Wildlife SOS founder Kartick Satyanarayan said. “As we did so, tears began to roll down Raju’s face.”


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The elephant was finally transported to the Elephant Conservation and Care Centre at Mathura.

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At the sanctuary, Raju is given immediate medical attention and fed well with bananas, banana leaves, mango, bread and biscuits.

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The elephant is now recuperating, and vets are treating his wounds.

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After half a century of suffering, Raju is now enjoying for the first time the taste of freedom and human kindness.

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Enjoying a shower.

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And roaming free at the sanctuary.

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It will be a long rehabilitation process, but we will teach him that humans don’t mean pain and brutality, but it’s going to take time,” Satyanarayan said.

To help for Raju’s recovery or learn more about Wildlife SOS, you can visit their website at