Mysuru: While the arrival of the second batch of elephants is devoid of the traditional reception accorded to the first batch, whose entry signals the countdown to Dasara festivities, the Forest Department staff in-charge of the elephants will arrange special prayers on their arrival at the Mysore palace.
The second batch includes Harsha (48) from Dubare camp has participated 13 times, weighs 3,300 to 3,400 kgs, Prashantha (59) from Dubare camp has participated 9 times and weighs 4,300 to 4,000, Gopi from Dubare camp has participated 5 times and weighs 3,700 to 3,800 kgs, Durgaparameshwari (48) from K. Gudi camp weighs 3,500 to 3,600 kgs, Gopalaswamy (33) from Thithimathi weighs 2,200 to 2,300. Kenchamba, the female elephant aged about 21 years, is participating in Dasara for the first time.
She weighs about 2,800 kgs. She was captured during an operation against rogue elephants at Alur in Hassan district, early this year. The elephants and their mahouts will be accommodated on the palace premises.
The elephants will join Arjuna, Balarama and company for rehearsal after a day’s rest. The elephants will be put on a special diet to gain additional weight and will walk along the procession route twice a day to get acclimatized to the noise and crowd.
While Arjuna will carry the 750-kg golden howdah on the day of the procession, Balarama will play the role of ‘Pattada ane’ and the other ten elephants will follow their leader.
According to the authorities, the six elephants will start their journey from respective camps and will check in to the city by 6 pm today. The role of Kenchamba, the debutant is yet to be decided and the foresters will take a call after watching her for some days.