‘Goddess of Pop’ Cher meets PM Imran Khan on visit to see ‘world’s loneliest elephant’ Kaavan
ISLAMABAD: American singer Cher, commonly referred to by the media as the “Goddess of Pop”, on Friday met Prime Minister Imran Khan during a visit to Pakistan to see Kaavan — the “world’s loneliest elephant” who is all set to go to his new home at a sanctuary in Cambodia.
The prime minister’s office confirmed her arrival, which was not revealed earlier to public due to security concerns.
The office shared a video of Cher sitting with PM Imran Khan in the expansive grounds of the latter’s residence, with the premier’s aides Malik Amin Aslam and Sayed Zulfikar Bukhari present.
Kaavan, an elephant who has languished in Islamabad’s Marghazar Zoo for more than three decades, lost his partner in 2012. He has been alone at the zoo since and veterinarians diagnosed him as malnourished and overweight.
Cher is in Pakistan to oversee Kaavan’s long-awaited departure to Cambodia on November 29, where he will be with other elephants and hopefully fare better.
She thanked PM Imran Khan “for making it possible for [her] to take Kaavan to Cambodia” and “for ensuring a cleaner and greener Pakistan”, according to the Prime Minister’s Office.
She has been closely following developments related to Kaavan’s freedom, expressing her delight when a court had ordered him to be set free from the zoo and thanking the Pakistani government for its efforts.
The premier appreciated her efforts in retiring Kaavan to an elephant sanctuary abroad, lauding her campaign and role in this regard. He also “invited the singer to participate and contribute towards the government’s initiative for the expansion of protected areas, to which she kindly agreed”.
The prime minister’s office quoted Cher as saying “both the ‘Protected Areas Initiative’ and the ’10 Billion Tree Tsunami’ initiative of the government were highly commendable and praiseworthy as nature based tools for climate mitigation”.