The photograph, “hell is here”, is becoming a fragment of deformation associated with our so-called insightful nation. The click has a mother elephant and her child, who is struggling to escape the crowd and as they try to escape the crowd, fire threatens to exhaust their existence. The baby-elephant looks, utterly confused and terrified and the mother is in a complete melancholic state. They both are entangled in the danger of ‘bursting crackers’.
The respective photograph has been captured by Biplab Hazra(photographer and the owner of the brick kiln ), in Bankura district of West-Bengal. The photograph has won the prestegious award by Sanctuary Nature Foundation. Sanctuary Nature Foundation is an Indian nonprofit foundation that was founded in 2015 building on the work of Sanctuary Asia, a wildlife magazine that was launched in 1981 by Bittu Sahgal.
Its network of conservationists, naturalists, scientists, writers, and photographers run various projects in environmental policy, advocacy, science, on-ground support, wildlife habitat management and more.
The foundation also holds annual awards to honor grassroots conservationists and wildlife photographers. The foundation said (in a release), “In the Bankura district of West Bengal, this sort of humiliation of pachyderms is routine, as it is in the other elephant-range states of Assam, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Tamil Nadu and more.”
Local people adopt these obstructive methods, to keep the innocent animals, away from the human-habitat area. As far as the fact is concerned, Asian elephants are the continent’s largest terrestrial mammals. They can reach 6.4m in length and 3m at the shoulder, and weigh as much as 5 tonnes. They are smaller than African elephants and have proportionally smaller ears, which they keep in constant motion in order to cool themselves. They also have a single ‘finger’ on the upper lip of their trunks as opposed to African elephants, which have a second one on the lower tip.
As per 2017’s census of elephants, India is home of 27,312 elephants accounting for 55 percent of total world elephant population.
The elephant population in Assam has increased from 5,246 in 2002 to 5,719 in 2017 but now faces serious challenge due to dwindling forest areas. The current scenario, that has been depicted by the photograph, is strongly heart-wrenching. We humans think that we have the monopoly of existence over the ecosystem and ignore the fact, that the environment is also meant for other living organisms, in which ‘elephants’ are one of them. The more, we use such horrendous methods to treat wild animals, the more untreatable wounds, we leave on the heart of the reputation, connected to the human race.