Mysuru: Arjuna will carry golden howdah this Dasara too

Mysuru: The forest department has tentatively finalised Arjuna to carry the 750kg golden howdah during the world famous Jumbo Savari procession on Vijayadashami day next month but they are not taking any chances and are training elephants Balarama and Abhimanyu to carry the howdah so that an alternative is available. 

Dr Nagaraj, veterinarian of the Dasara elephants said, “Training the jumbos to carry the weight will begin after Ganesh Chathurthi on Thursday. To begin with, sand bags weighing 300 kgs will be tied to the back of the elephants and gradually the weight will be increased. They will then be trained to carry a wooden howdah with sand bags, weighing 750 kgs (the weight of the golden howdah). We plan to give weight training to second line elephants including Gopi, Dhananjaya, Drona and Gopalswamy too so that they are ready to carry the howdah in the next five to six years.” 

Meanwhile the district administration has got insurance done for not just the Dasara elephants but for their mahouts and kaawadis also for their period of stay in Mysuru upto October end.  The insurance has been done for Rs 84 lakh and a premium of Rs 44,320 has been paid to The New India Assurance Company Limited. They have insured the male elephants for Rs 3 lakh each and female elephants for Rs 2 lakh each.  

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