As the stage is set for Kerala’s iconic festival Thrissur pooram, Hollywood actress Pamela Anderson has written to Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy asking him not to the use elephants for the festival.
Anderson’s email to Chandy comes in the wake of an Animal Welfare Board of India’s (AWBI) advisory telling Kerala officials to leave live elephants out of the upcoming Thrissur Pooram parade because they are not registered with AWBI which is required by law before any animal can be made to perform.
In her letter, Anderson, a long time People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India patron offered to contribute the cost of providing 30 life-sized, realistic and portable elephants made of bamboo and papier-mache to replace live elephants “whose use is coming under increasing scrutiny because of changing public opinion.”
“I’m sure you know that both Indian and international public opinion is turning solidly against use of elephants in captivity,” wrote Anderson, two days ahead of the Pooram to be held at Vadakkunnathan temple in Thrissur town.
The festival, in which several elephants are paraded, is held every year on Pooram Day of the Malayalam calendar month of ‘Medam’ (April).
“I’d like to offer my support for what is a wonderful opportunity to make a stunning, humane spectacle that everyone would talk about and that would garner international praise,” she said in the letter released to the media by PETA India.