Thai elephant Sak Surin, who recently returned from Sri Lanka, is set to receive a welcoming ceremony organized by the National Resources and Environment Ministry. The event is scheduled to take place at the Thai Elephant Conservation Center (TECC) in Lampang after the completion of the elephant’s 30-day quarantine.
National Resources and Environment Minister Varawut Silpa-archa announced that the ceremony would be conducted once Sak Surin undergoes a blood test and receives a clean bill of health. The TECC, where the 30-year-old elephant has been receiving care since his arrival on July 2, will open its doors to the public for them to meet and interact with Sak Surin after the ceremony. During his recovery period, the elephant will reside with other elephants at the center.
Sak Surin’s journey back to Thailand followed a tumultuous history. In 2001, he was among three Thai elephants gifted to Sri Lanka as goodwill ambassadors. However, over the years, the elephant changed hands multiple times and ended up at the Kande Viharaya temple in Aluthgama, where he was allegedly subjected to abuse and neglect. Eventually, he was taken to the National Zoological Gardens in November last year, according to Rally for Animal Rights and Environment (RARE), an animal organization based in Sri Lanka.
Sak Surin’s return has been met with relief and anticipation for his recovery and well-being, with the welcoming ceremony marking the beginning of a new chapter for the animal in Thailand. (NNT)