Thailand prepares warm welcome for Sak Surin

Image courtesy of Bangkok Post.

The National Resource and Environment Ministry in Thailand announced plans to organise a Bai Sri Su Khwan welcoming ceremony for Sak Surin, a 30 year old elephant, following the conclusion of his 30-day quarantine duration. This information was put forth by Natural Resources and Environment Minister Varawut Silpa-archa. Additionally, it was hinted that the festivities will take place at the Thai Elephant Conservation Centre (TECC) situated in Lampang.

Sak Surin has been receiving medical care at this centre since his return from Sri Lanka on July 2. His health indicators will be affirmed through a conclusive blood test before he is deemed fit, hence each phase of his treatment is under tight scrutiny.

Post the Bai Sri Su Khwan ceremony, the public will have the opportunity to meet Sak Surin, Bangkok Post reported. The elephant’s ultimate sanctuary will be amongst his kind at the centre until his health is fully restored, as disclosed by the Environment Minister.

In 2001, Sak Surin was among a trio of Thai elephants that were presented as gifts to Sri Lanka, symbolising goodwill ambassadors. Over the years, his ownership changed hands multiple times, resulting in his adoption by the Kande Viharaya temple located in Aluthgama, a part of southern Sri Lanka. He became a vital part of the annual Buddhist parades as he carried sacred relics.

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Unfortunately, the graceful tusker’s life was marred by alleged mistreatment and neglect which led to his relocation to the National Zoological Gardens in November of the previous year. This was noted by Rally for Animal Rights and Environment (Rare), an animal rights organisation based in Sri Lanka.

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Mitch Connor

Mitch is a Bangkok resident, having relocated from Southern California, via Florida in 2022. He studied journalism before dropping out of college to teach English in South America. After returning to the US, he spent 4 years working for various online publishers before moving to Thailand.

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