My name is Kaavan


Current petition please sign!

Kaavan has Secured a Sanctuary at No cost to Pakistan at Cambodia Wildlife Sanctuary

My name is Kaavan.  This is my life…. As a baby I was torn away from my mother’s loving reach.  I didn’t understand what had happened  but all of a sudden I was taken to this place where there was nothing familiar to me and no-one like me.   Heavy chains were placed at my feet, I was  beaten until finally I had to give in.   I did everything they wanted hoping they’d stop hurting me.  My memory of my mama and family slowly faded away.   But I always dreamt of the life they had taken away.  The days turned into months  the months into years  as I stood alone bearing the cruelty  as best as I could.  

Then one day I saw a beautiful sight of someone who looked  and talked just like me.  Saheli!  She became my companion, my friend. my reason to live… we helped each other bear the chains and not having enough to drink  or to eat.  But one day  she started complaining because the chains were too tight on her legs  and one of her legs was cut and bleeding.  Then when she was let out of the chains to work for the masters getting money she started to limp when she walked.  She was in so much pain.  But nothing was done. She suffered for weeks. On that terrible day when she fell down and could not get up and then just laid there for 2 long days and nights  I tried to comfort her, I pleaded for her not to die.  I touched her softly with my trunk as I knew she was very sick.  But with my feet in chains I couldn’t help her.  I cried as she died, and screamed as she was taken from me… I went crazy.  The masters didn’t understand and they kept me  strongly tethered  in chains on all my feet in my dirty shed in the same place for almost a year without ever walking.  I have spent most of my life in chains.


Years have gone by.  Not much has changed.  They take my chains off more now, and the cruel masters have gone and new ones have come.  But I’m still in this place surrounded by all this concrete with nothing to do and I feel so frustrated and bored and sad.   I swing and I sway  – It is my only relief from this hell I am forced to live in.  

Please help me. 

Love, Kaavan

Kaavan has been secured a home in a beautiful sanctuary where he will have 1 million acres to roam completely FREE.


Never again will there be chains at his feet.  No more abuse.  No more cruelty will he have to live.

Experienced people who understand him will  help him heal.  And he will have medical care available 24/7.   But most importantly for his physical and mental recovery is that  he will be able to live among those who are just like him. and he will be able to choose who wants to spend his days and nights with,  be able to come and go among them as he wants, he will learn to live as a true male Asian elephant lives.

He will be an elephant with dignity.  

Sweet Kaavan, gentle Kaavan, playful Kaavan, #FreeKaavan

Impression Cambodia Wildlife Sanctuary 2017 

Thank YOU !
#FreeKaavan #TeamKaavan



 Email Template 1

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Subject: Peoples Plea for Kaavan, the elephant at Islamabad Zoo

Dear Senators,

You have told the world that transferring Kaavan to sanctuary is ‘the right thing to do’, and I deeply appreciate the Recommendation of the Standing Committee (Cabinet Secretariat) of 25 July 2016, and Senate Chairman Raza Rabbani’s involvement on the floor of the Senate.

Frustratingly, almost 1 year has passed and Kaavan is still held by CDA Islamabad. The boredom, lethargy, depression and anger this elephant must be feeling is heartbreaking, and you know the worrying state of his feet. As I’m sure you are aware many were deeply affected by the death of Suzi at Lahore Zoo and are ever mindful that one day this could be Kaavan. But there is hope – he has been offered a home in a sanctuary that already has other retired female elephant by the expert in elephant rehabilitation Lek Chailert, and the founder David Casselman whose official offer you have in writing. It is all set, he can start his new life!

I am aware that no action is being taken by the zoo to build the ‘protected contact’ fence that would allow Kaavan to be trained to receive proper veterinary care and standard medical checks – as recommended by Four Paws International in January 2017 after they kindly visited Kaavan in December 2016, and offered their assistance. Of course, if there is no health assessment he will not get his CITES documentation essential for the transfer.

You may have seen that a great number of us around the world are pleading for Kaavan and it is very difficult to understand why the highest authority in the land can be ignored by CDA Islamabad. Watching the CDA do nothing over the last 2 years to improve Kaavan’s life and knowing he spends yet another scorching summer in that barren place is bringing shame on them. There is even a rumour that the old keeper Bilal is back in charge of him but I very much hope that this is confirmed as untrue.

I am not privy to the reasons why the CDA did not follow protocol and formerly submit objections to your Recommendation, nor why a full vote of the Senate has not been called for in order to over-rule obfuscation by the CDA.

I feel that we missed an opportunity last year, in spite of your strong support. We now respectfully request that if a full vote of the Senate to support your Recommendation is the only way forward that you will permit this. Please put Kaavan back on your Agenda.

We all very much look forward to hearing from you.

Thank You.



 Email Template Day 2 Email 2

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Urgent appeal for Kaavan the elephant at Islamabad (formerly Marghazar) Zoo
Sheikh Anser Aziz Chairman CDA Islamabad, Mayor of Islamabad
Dr. Tariq Fazal Chaudhary Minister of State for Capital Administration and Development Division

Dear Chairman Mayor Anser Aziz and Dr Tariq Fazal

Respectfully, it has been almost 1 year since Senate Standing Committee Chairman Senator Talha Mahmood and the committee Recommended Kaavan’s transfer to sanctuary. I am trying to understand why the CDA did not respond to the recommendation within the 6 week time period the Pakistani Constitution permits for objections to a recommendation.

In December 2016 you permitted Four Paws International to visit the zoo and Kaavan, and in January 2017 they wrote to you with suggestions and offers of assistance with training for the mahouts. They recommended an electric security barrier around Kaavan’s enclosure, and a fence within the enclosure that would permit ‘protected contact’ veterinary and medical care which Kaavan so desperately needs. They also observed his severe stereotypic head weaving behaviour.

People around the world look on and see that little changes for Kaavan. This increases my concern and, daily brings more people wanting to help him. With the death of Suzi at Lahore Zoo and knowing that she was of a similar age to Kaavan it increases my worry that Kaavan will become ill, and, like Saheli, no one will be able to give him treatment. Additionally knowing that all scientific research and ground level observation states that elephants are highly social, intelligent animals and that they all – including males – regularly spend time with other elephants – Kaavan being alone for so many years is sure to entrench and very possibly worsen his mental health. As you are aware there is a very close link between mental and physical ill-health in animals.

In February 2017 world elephant rehabilitation expert Lek Chailert, Founder of Save Elephant Foundation, offered Kaavan a place at a sanctuary of which she is a co-Founder. The Founder David Casselman wrote an official offer of a home for Kaavan at the Cambodia Wildlife Sanctuary. Friends then found international sponsorship to assist with Kaavan’s transportation in order that there be absolutely no cost to the CDA/Islamabad or Pakistan. This is purely because it will be in the best interest of Kaavan because I know through repeated example how sanctuary life heals elephants.

How can we assist you with the process of preparing Kaavan for transportation to the sanctuary?
Would you like to speak with our elephant expert so that he can share with you about the process of preparation of Kaavan and clear any doubts you may have?

This urgent appeal to you comes with my good wishes, and hope that I will be able to sing your praises as forward thinking people with true concern for Kaavan’s best welfare. Pakistan would be known as a country with true professional concern for doing what is best in this situation – for doing what is right.

If your kind hearts allow this is where Kaavan world get to spend the rest of his natural life

I very much look forward to hearing from you.




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