Once young, wild, and free. Rama. After an introduction to the status of elephants in central India, focusing on the state of Chhattisgarh , I started collating available statistics to provide a summary of elephant populations, deaths due to man-made reasons, and human fatalities due to elephants, for the country. Much of this data was not actively provided by the Project Elephant, which it ideally should, but gleamed through from the Rajya Sabha Question and Answer session notes. The fact that questions on human-wildlife conflict resulting in animal and human deaths are frequently asked at India’s meeting of the council of states, shows that it is a pressing, political issue. Such information, collected through taxpayer money no less, should be available to the public without waiting for yearly sessions. The elephant in the room is a poster summarizing publicly-available information on wild elephants of India and human-wildlife interactions resulting in deaths. A high-resolution poste
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The Lords of the Grasslands, in Kaziranga National Park. The children’s stories of the ant and the elephant have always made me wonder what their true relationship is – the versions I heard pinned the elephant, proud and powerful, against the ant, timid but sharp, the tale ending with the ant stinging the elephant in a place it cannot reach – literally and allegorically. In most stories, the ant symbolised the underdog who triumphed over the elephant, rarely did they both work together or become friends. Long after, I started working on the concept of ants to elephants, and not merely because they rhyme. Through the tales and their scale, they represent most of the animals I grew up watching and admiring and studying, but in this case, it was simply connecting two organisms I am passionate about, insects and elephants. Come to think about it, plants to elephants encompass a much larger scope under this philosophy. On various occasions, I explored insects and elephants independently.