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PETA India’s EV Chariot to replace Amer Fort elephants

A graphic representation of the PETA Electric Chariot

The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India representatives, in an in-person meeting with Rajasthan Chief secretary Niranjan Arya, submitted a design of electric royal chariot for replacing elephants at the Amer Fort. The unique design, which PETA India and Desmania Design suggested to be named "Maharaja", resembles a royal chariot. The vehicle could ferry four tourists per trip and would be suitable for the hilly terrain like that at Amer Fort.

It would be pertinent to mention that a committee constituted by the Project Elephant Division of the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change recently had recommended to phase out elephant rides at Amer Fort by replacing them with electric vehicle rides. Following this PETA India collaborated with Desmania Design to create a modern electric vehicle.

PETA India representatives also submitted a factsheet to the Chief Secretary citing shocking instances in which captive elephants have reacted to their abuse at Amer Fort, leading to serious injuries, deaths, and destruction of property, and requested him to safeguard tourists and the general public from such health and safety risks.

“We hope tourists and elephants will be given the royal treatment with these majestic, cutting-edge cars, which can replace animals forced to give rides," said Chief Advocacy Officer, Khushboo Gupta .

The Central Government had appointed the expert committee following an order by the Supreme Court last March, and the committee report incorporated recommendations made by PETA India, including ending elephant rides, citing ageing elephants and tourists' declining preference for these rides. The committee's recommendations also included refraining using elephants with irreparable eye problems for rides and banning any new additions of elephants for rides.

Significantly, the report notes that of the 98 captive elephants inspected, 22 suffered from irreversible eye problems and 42 had foot problems, including overgrown nails and flat footpads from walking on concrete roads. Three elephants tested positive for tuberculosis, a disease that could be fatal for tourists who catch it.