Thai Elephants Day activities: Merit-making for dead elephants, elephant parade & alms-giving by elephants.

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BANGKOK, 14 March 2013 Various agencies in Thailand has held activities celebrating Thai Elephants Day to promote awareness of the significance of elephants, an animal that has been a symbol of Thailand since ancient times. 

In Prachuapkhirikhan province, a merit-making ceremony was held to make merits for 19 wild elephants that died in Kuiburi national park. An exhibit was set up to present the history and the causes of death of the elephants. Activities for youths were also conducted to foster the young people’s love for elephants.

In Surin province, 48 elephants paraded along the main roads in Surin City, flashing messages describing problems affecting elephants, such as killings of the elephants for ivory and for elephant calves. On this occasion, the Surin provincial administrative organization made it a provincial agenda to sustainably solve the problem of ‘stray elephants’.

In Lampang province, a special Buddhist alms-giving event was hosted, which allowed the local public to give alms alongside the jumbos. A giant alms bowl was made especially for this purpose. A prayers session was also held to make merit for deceased elephants. Other activities consisted of the annual awarding of outstanding mahouts and a feast for the pachyderms.