The Supreme Court on Thursday said it was fed up with petitions on wild tusker Arikomban. A bench headed by Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud dismissed a petition filed by an animal rights body, Walking Eye Foundation for Animal Advocacy, saying it was not the remit of the apex court.
Moreover, the CJI imposed a cost of Rs 25,000 on the petitioner and said he will “not allow lawyers to take my court for a ride”. The animal rights body had moved the court seeking status on the welfare of the tusker.
“Nothing on Arikomban. We are fed up with this Arikomban. You go to the Kerala High Court. They are aware of the ground realities. Every week we are getting a petition that places this elephant somewhere else. That is not the remit of the Supreme Court,” the bench said.
The petitioner had sought the Supreme Court's intervention in directing the Kerala HC to provide “an urgent report on affidavit... regarding the health, condition, movement, and position of Arikomban and provide measures for safeguarding his Right to Life and Liberty as enshrined under Article 21 of the Constitution of India”.
Dismissing the petition as “a misuse of the process of the court”, the CJI advised to “pay a cost of Rs 25,000 payable to the welfare fund of the Supreme Court Bar Association. Since you have dealt with our attitude under Article 32, you pay the cost. I don't allow lawyers to take my court for a ride. Do not misunderstand the gentle demeanour. There can be a tough exterior behind it. You now suffer”.
Arikomban, a notorious wild tusker that had caused destruction to life and property, had caught national attention in April when the Kerala Forest Department captured it from its habitat, Chinnakanal in Idukki district.
The animal, fitted with a GPS tracker, was released in the Periyar Tiger Reserve on April 29. But it strayed into the limits of the Tamil Nadu Forest Department triggering panic in the neighbouring state.
A second translocation mission was launched on June 6 and the tusker was released in the Kalakkad Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve. The Tamil Nadu Forest Department has been issuing updates on the tusker.
(With PTI inputs)