Thursday, October 3, 2013

Unseen hands which feed elephants

Meet this group of six people who are supplying fodder for the elephants during dasara. They are Chotu alias Babu, Ravi, Nanjappa, Basavaraju, Veerappan and Siddaramaiah. The team headed by Chottu, a resident of Rajiv Nagar, informed that one week prior to the arrival of jumbos from the forest the team members venture out to trace the location of banyan trees and advance the farmers.

The group leaves the city in the morning around 6.30 am in search of the banyan tree of the remote villages of Pandavapura, Bedarahalli, Sindahalli, Belikere, Gagenahjalli, Dharmapura, and other surrounding areas. They unload the banyan branches daily two times. In the past 15 yerars they have bid the tender several times.

The team members say they will not do any other work in two months of dasara season. Babu says he has been feed the elephants for about 6-7 years and expressed pleasure at being a part of dasara activities.
Though a majority of the elephants don't like to eat the leaves of the banyan tree, enjoy eating the branches. Veterniary Doctor Nagaraj said that the stems are rich in fiber and the elephants find them tastier.

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