A dramatic video of a young elephant being rescued has gone viral and is winning hearts. The footage shows the elephant stuck in a muddy puddle in Hassan district of India's southern state Karnataka and seemed disoriented.
After 12 hours of being stuck in a damp puddle, the elephant was rescued by forest officials following a three-hour-long operation.
NDTV reported that on March 11, a male young elephant had strayed into Madihalli village after it got secluded from its pack while searching for food and water. While wandering the agricultural land, the animal fell into a muddy puddle and was unable to get out. The frightened animal started making noises for help.
Listening to its cries, villagers rushed to the spot, thinking it was a baby elephant. But when they reached they saw it's a fairly big tusker. Unfortunately, they didn't have the necessary equipment to help the animal and they informed the forest department.
"The villagers were scared. They thought it was a small elephant but it wasn't. It is impossible for humans to rescue such a big animal using only their hands. They need some equipment," local animal activist Bhagya Lakshmi told NDTV.
However, forest department officials could not reach the spot immediately and only arrived the following day's morning.
"It [elephant] was in the muddy pit for nearly 12 hours and cried for help all night," Lakshmi added.
The forest officials arranged for an excavator machine and had to cut out one end of the puddle to rescue the animal. "They planned how to save and rescue the elephant...They kept on digging till the elephant was free," said Lakshmi.
As soon as the elephant was able to stand up, it attacked the operator of the excavator as it was confused and frightened. However, no one was hurt and the elephant ran away into the forest.
The video was shared by Animal Rescue India on March 13 and garnered more than 26K views by the time of writing the article.
Check out the video here: