Music legend Paul McCartney has come to the aid of an Indian elephant named Jeymalyatha who’s being held captive in a temple in Tamil Nadu.
A viral video showed Jeymalyatha, who is also known as Joymala, screaming in apparent pain while being beaten with weapons. She was chained to the floor, and in one bit of footage, a worker appeared to twist her skin with pliers to control her in front of inspectors.
McCartney, who has long been passionate about animal rights, wrote a letter to Bhupender Yadav, the Indian Union Cabinet Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change.
He requested that Jeymalyatha, who PETA says is being kept illegally, be moved to a suitable rescue center.
In the letter, McCartney wrote: “I am confident that action will be taken to send sorely abused elephant Jeymalyatha (Joymala) to a suitable rescue center where she can receive the specialized care she needs for her psychological wounds, and can live unchained and in the company of others of her kind.”
He also highlighted that female elephants in the wild live in a family herd. He said it was “heartbreaking that this social, intelligent animal is still being forced to live in solitary confinement.”
The fight to rescue Jeymalyatha
According to PETA, Jeymalyatha has been held captive illegally for more than a decade. She is thought to have initially been at the temple on a six-month lease. She was, however, never returned to the Assam Forest Department.
Poorva Joshipura, Senior Vice President of International Affairs at PETA India, told Plant Based News: “Paul’s letter brings her one step closer to escaping her hellish life in Tamil Nadu and being transferred to a rescue centre where she can recover from her trauma, receive specialized care, and – instead of leading a lonely life – enjoy the company of other elephants.”
McCartney’s letter followed a plea from PETA India to the Virudhunagar police and Animal Welfare Board of India. A report has allegedly been registered against one of the keepers who was caught beating her.
Paul McCartney’s animal advocacy
McCartney, known for being part of The Beatles, stopped eating meat in 1975. He made the change after seeing lambs running around a field while eating lamb with his late wife, Linda McCartney.
Recently, McCartney joined calls urging Starbucks to stop charging extra for dairy-free milk.
In a letter to the coffee chain’s CEO Kevin Johnson, McCartney urged him to consider animal welfare and the “future of the planet” and remove the upcharge.