Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, M.K. Stalin on Wednesday congratulated and felicitated Bomman and Bellie, the caretaker couple at Theppakadu Elephant Camp. The duo had featured in the Oscar-winning short documentary film, 'The Elephant Whisperers' directed by Kartiki Gonsalves.
The Chief Minister also announced Rs 1 lakh to each of the 91 elephant caretakers in the two camps from the Chief Minister's Relief Fund. Stalin also announced Rs 9.1 crore for the construction of homes for the Mahouts.
An additional Rs 5 crore was announced to develop an elephant camp in Anamalai Tiger Reserve. A 39-minute documentary 'The Elephant Whisperers' featured Bomman and Bellie for their patience and love in taking care of the elephant calves, 'Reghu' and 'Ammu' at the Theppakadu elephant camp in Mudumalai Tiger Reserve in the lap of The Nilgiris.
The Director of the short documentary film, Kartiki Gonsalves had stayed for five years in the forests along with the caretakers and the mahouts to painstakingly shoot the documentary which shows the bonding and love between the wild animals and the caretakers.
The short documentary film is an Indo-American production with Guneet Monga as its Executive Producer. It won the Oscar for the directorial debut of Kartiki Gonsalves who was born and brought up in Ooty, Tamil Nadu.