Harshvardhan Rane Urges Fans to Relate to Elephants Abused for Joyrides in New PETA Campaign

For Immediate Release:
9 February 2016

Sachin Bangera; [email protected]
Shambhavi Tiwari; [email protected]

Sanam Teri Kasam Star Draws Attention to the Plight of India’s Suffering Elephants in New PETA Campaign

Mumbai – As he rejoices in his success and enjoys the fantastic reaction of critics and the audience equally for his Bollywood debut movie, Sanam Teri Kasam, actor Harshvardhan Rane also wants to draw attention to a cause close to his heart – the suffering of elephants used for tourist “joyrides”. In his new campaign for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India, the handsome Harshvardhan stands bare-chested in chains next to the tagline “It’s Not Just a Ride. It’s Their Life. Elephants Used for Rides Are Beaten, Chained, Broken”. The campaign was shot by photographer Rohith Rao. Harshvardhan’s hairstyling and make-up were done by Sheetal Jain.

The Telugu film actor, who is also known for the movies Thakita Thakita (2010) and Prema Ishq Kaadhal (2013), Harshvardhan states, “Elephant rides are not at all joyful for the animals. I don’t think it is cool at all to apply force and make someone do something which they are not willing to”.

So-called “joyrides” are not joyful and are instead often painful for the elephants who are forced to give them. A PETA-commissioned investigation of elephant training in Nepal and a PETA investigation of elephants used for rides in Jaipur revealed that elephants are physically and emotionally abused at every juncture. Often when they are just 2 years old, baby elephants are torn away from the tender care of their mothers and are either tied up between trees with heavy chains and ropes, which cause painful burns, or confined to a tiny wooden enclosure called a kraal. Trainers then beat the young elephants with sticks and jab them with ankuses until they lose all hope and begin to obey commands, a process that sometimes lasts for months. These metal weapons are also used to pierce their sensitive ears, yank on them and force them to walk in a certain fashion. Trainers then continue to thrash the elephants on their heads and other parts of their bodies when they don’t obey, leaving many injured. They are often forced to give rides with untreated open wounds.

For more information, please visit PETAIndia.com.