By Bilal Kuchay
Dramatic visuals show the Sri Lankan navy men rescuing an elephant from drowning after a strong current dragged it five miles out to sea.
The hapless elephant can be seen struggling in the rough waters until a group of navy men come to its rescue.
Footage shows naval personnel guiding the elephant toward the coast.
In the video, one of the navy men can be seen climbing onto the back of the mammal and helping it recourse to safety.
Sri Lankan navy mounted the 12-hour rescue after spotting the elephant struggling to stay afloat around five miles off the coast.
A navy spokesman, Chaminda Walakuluge said: “It was a miraculous escape for the elephant. The animal had likely got swept into the sea.”
The elephant, caught in strong water currents, was first spotted by a navy vessel which was on a routine patrol in the sea about eight nautical miles off Kokkuthuduwai, Kokilai.
The Sri Lankan navy then promptly directed another vessel and a team of navy divers to the location.
Stepping up the rescue effort, two more boats along with seven naval personnel attached to the Rapid Action Boat Squadron (RABS) were also dispatched for the ‘jumbo’ rescue mission.
A group of officials from the Department of Wildlife also joined the rescue providing necessary instructions in the rescue mission.
The navy personnel were able to carefully direct the elephant toward the coast, by means of ropes.
After successfully rescuing the elephant, the animal was handed over to the wildlife officials.