Nadungamuwa Raja, the tallest elephant in Sri Lanka and the tusker who carried the Sacred Casket of Buddha Relics at the annual Kandy Perahera, the most number of times, passed away this morning.
The tusker, passed away at around 5.30am at the age of 69 due to a suspected heart attack.
Nadungamuwa Raja has carried the main casket at the Kandy Perahera for 13 years since 2006.
Nadungamuwa Raja was part of last year’s Kandy Perahera as well despite suffering from an illness.
Born in 1953, in India, Nadungamuwa Raja was brought to Sri Lanka at the age of five.
Meanwhile, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa has issued directives to name Nadungamuwa Raja as a national treasure.
President Rajapaksa issued directives to the Secretary to the Ministry of Buddhasasana, Religious & Cultural Affairs Professor Kapila Gunawardena to preserve the carcass of the tusker as well.
The President’s Media Division said a group of officials attached to the national museum is currently visiting Nadungamuwa, Weliweriya to obtain more information regarding the tusker.