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CLAIM ID

9389fe18

The elephant in Kerala was killed by Muslims.

The elephant was not killed but she died of injuries after eating a cracker-stuffed coconut which was planted by a man named Wilson to scare boars

The elephant was not killed but she died of injuries after eating a cracker-stuffed coconut which was planted by a man named Wilson to scare boarsOn 27 May 2020, officials of the forest department of Kerala said that a pregnant wild elephant died standing in the river Velliyar at the Palakkad district. Reports claimed that the elephant had sustained injuries after eating a pineapple stuffed with fireworks. The officials first spotted the injured animal on 23 May 2020 and two days later, the elephant was seen standing in the river.

Firecracker-filled fruits are commonly used by villagers in Kerala to protect their fields against wild boars. The practice has been widely condemned and is illegal. On Friday, June 5, the Kerala Forest Department arrested one person for his alleged involvement in the death of the pregnant elephant. Palakkad Superintendent of Police G Siva Vikram told the media that the accused - Wilson - works as a rubber tapper at a plantation in the district. The alleged owners of the estate, who are also suspects in the case, are identified as Abdul Kareem and Riyazuddin and are currently absconding. The incident triggered a hate campaign against Muslims on social media after Maneka Gandhi, a BJP parliamentarian and an animal rights activist, said the incident happened in Malappuram district, which has 70 percent Muslim population.

On June 8, 2020, the Union Ministry of Environment stated that as per the autopsy report the elephant had eaten a coconut and not a pineapple and she may have accidentally eaten the cracker-stuffed fruit. The ministry also said the injuries were at least two weeks old.

Shameer Parakode a member of the volunteer group that monitored the elephant before its death along with forest officials, said Wilson had confessed to the police that he had set up a snare for wild boars inside a coconut on May 12.

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