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SC refuses to entertain mahout’s plea for releasing elephant Laxmi from ‘detention’

A bench headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde wondered how a habeas corpus plea can be heard for an elephant. "Is elephant a citizen of India?"

By: PTI | New Delhi | Published: January 9, 2020 12:57:42 pm
SC refuses to entertain mahout's plea for releasing elephant Laxmi from 'detention' Laxmi and her mahout Saddam. (Express Photo: Praveen Khanna)

The Supreme Court on Thursday refused to entertain a habeas corpus plea filed by a mahout seeking release of elephant Laxmi from alleged illegal detention.

A bench headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde wondered how a habeas corpus plea can be heard for an elephant. “Is elephant a citizen of India,” the bench also comprising justices B R Gavai and Surya Kant said.

The habeas corpus plea was filed by mahout Saddam seeking release of the 47-year-old elephant.

Last year in July, the elephant had gone missing and a countrywide alert was issued to trace it. It was found by the Delhi forest department two months later.

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The police had “detained” the jumbo, Laxmi, along with its mahout, Saddam, from Yamuna Pusta area in the national capital in September last year.

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