Two days before Kaavan is expected to fly to Cambodia, where he will retire in a wildlife sanctuary, US pop star Cher met Prime Minister Imran Khan and thanked him for his efforts in making this possible. The singer, who has campaigned for Kaavan’s freedom for years and is helping pay for his move, arrived in Pakistan this week to see the animal off.

“Just came from meeting to thank PM Imran Khan for making it possible for me to take Kaavan to Cambodia,” said Cher in a tweet.

Meanwhile, a statement from PM Khan’s office said that the prime minister appreciated Cher’s efforts in retiring Kaavan to an elephant sanctuary and thanked the singer for her campaign and role in this regard.

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According to the PM Office, Cher also appreciated PM Khan’s efforts in combating climate change and working towards a cleaner and greener Pakistan.

“She also offered her support for furthering the green initiatives through her organisation ‘Free the Wild,’ added the PM office.

Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam, who was also present at the meeting, also thanked the US singer for coming to Pakistan to see the elephant off.

As per details, 36-year-old Kaavan is set to fly out of Pakistan on November 29 on a Russian cargo plane, specially chartered for his transportation.

A team of vets and experts from Four Paws, an Austria-based animal welfare group, has spent months working with Kaavan to get him ready for the journey to Cambodia. Experts have trained Kaavan to enter a large metal crate that will be used to transport the animal to the airport.

Kaavan was also put on a diet of fruit and vegetables and has lost half a ton (450 kilograms). Previously, Kaavan was eating 250 kilograms (550 pounds) of pure sugar cane every day, with an occasional fruit and vegetable.

“All arrangements have been made, a Russian plane has been chartered that will land at Rawalpindi’s military (Chaklala Airport) in the morning of November 29, the same evening Kaavan will depart the Marghazar Zoo at 3 PM in VIP protocol paying his last regards to the city where he was brought as a calf from Sri Lanka in 1985. Kaavan was brought up at the same Marghazar Zoo. Here he had a female companion Saheli who later died of gangrene in 2012,” shared Director of the Four Paws Project Dr Amir Khalil.

“Now at the age of 36, Kaavan is leaving for yet another home into retirement,” said Dr Khalil.

The doctor added that there are many elephants at the sanctuary, but in particular three female elephants are awaiting Kaavan’s arrival. He joked that Kaavan might just find a girlfriend there.

On November 24, Islamabad Zoo gave Kaavan a farewell party, which was attended by the public and government officials. The party was held right outside Kaavan’s enclosure and also included performances by Haroon, Natasha Baig, Khumaariyan and Arieb Azhar.

Later, President of Pakistan Dr Arif Alvi also paid a visit to Islamabad Zoo to bid farewell to Kaavan. During his visit, President Alvi said that he hopes that Kaavan finds happiness in Cambodia.