A heartwarming moment of an elephant helping a calf trying to cross a roadside barrier as it softly nudges the baby elephant to ease the climb has been caught on camera by a group of cyclists from Kerala.
The video, which has been widely shared on social media, was shot by 38-year-old Anish Kata.
It was around 7:30 am on Thursday when Anish Kata, with three others, was cycling in Kerala's Malappuram district.
The group of cyclists saw three elephants at Nadukani Churam, not very far from the Kerala-Tamil Nadu border.
The clip - nearly one-minute long - shows one of the two young elephants easily crossing the divider while the elder one is already on the other side. The younger one, who is just as tall as the barrier, continues to struggle.
The calf tries several times before the elder elephant crosses the barrier, apparently to help the baby elephant.
Two of them are then seen going to the other side but the calf is hassled again. The elder elephant then uses its trunk to give a soft push to the calf, making it easier for the baby elephant to climb.
"It was a hugely touching scene. It was like seeing a mother taking care of a child. Not much traffic was there at that time because of the lockdown and this being near an inter-state border. A few other vehicles - including some commercial vehicles - waited for a while. This lasted for around half an hour," Anish Kata told NDTV.
Many on social media were awe-struck by the visuals. Former Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh tweeted:
A video from Kerala (shared on WhatsApp) that shows why our infrastructure should be constructed with utmost thought and concern for wildlife.— Jairam Ramesh (@Jairam_Ramesh) July 3, 2020
Appreciate the kindness of the truck drivers who waited till the elephants passed and didn't add more to their anxiety. pic.twitter.com/BBGyh6ts68