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A skeletal 70-year-old elephant has been withdrawn from a high-profile annual Buddhist pageant in Sri Lanka following a social media firestorm against parading the feeble animal. The chief custodian of the Temple of the Tooth -- which organises the event -- Pradeep Nilanga Dela said Tikiri would not be part of Wednesday's grand finale, involving dozens of jumbos.
Dela said the elephant's "medical condition" meant her owners told him she would not be part of Kandy city's parade and told AFP by telephone, "Tikiri is being treated." Animal-lovers lambasted the authorities for forcing the aged animal to parade several kilometers (miles) wearing elaborate clothing at the hugely popular night festival. Asian elephant expert Jayantha Jayewardene described the animal's treatment as inhumane.
Australian Jack Miller will stay with Pramac Ducati next season after agreeing a contract extension, the MotoGP team said on Wednesday. The 24-year-old had expressed uncertainty about his future after talk of Spain's triple MotoGP champion Jorge Lorenzo returning to the Italian manufacturer despite being contracted to Honda. "I am very happy to have reached this agreement," Miller said in a team statement. "Pramac Racing is a team that made me feel comfortable right from the start and the relationship with Ducati is very close.
A female leader of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) was arrested on sedition charges. Swat police had detained Nasim Akhtar a few days ago for allegedly raising slogans against the Pakistan Army during a protest demonstration. The police said the first information report (FIR) against her was registered under Sections 120B (criminal conspiracy), 121 (waging war against Pakistan), 124A (sedition) of the Pakistan Penal Code and Section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act.
"She raised slogans against the state institutions, including Pakistan Army, and was inciting others. Today, she was presented before a local court after initial investigations. The court sent her to Timergara prison on judicial remand," said Falak Naz, a policeman at the Mingora police station.
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