India’s glitterati gathered in force on Friday evening, as the Gemfields ‘Emeralds for Elephants’ exhibition drew to an exciting finale with a Grand Auction at the Taj Mahal Palace in Mumbai. The ‘Emeralds for Elephants’ collection raised a staggering total of US$750,000 with US$150,000 going to the World Land Trust and Wildlife Trust of India’s conservation projects in India.
World Land Trust and Wildlife Trust of India work together to create a protected network of wildlife corridors so elephants can follow their traditional migration routes in a bid to minimise human-Elephant conflict.
Gemfields, one of the world’s leading coloured gemstone producers brings ethically mined Zambian emeralds to the market. Each jeweller used unique Zambian emeralds in their designs, which formed the ‘Emeralds for Elephants’ collection.
Ambassador for the ‘Emeralds for Elephants’ project and Bollywood actress, Madhuri Dixit, attended the Grand Auction and addressed guests on why she had given her support to the cause. Speaking at the event, Madhuri Dixit appealed to guests saying:
‘This collaboration demonstrates that everyone has something to give, and I believe that we all need to give something back to the natural world we share with these animals’.
Madhuri was joined by England Cricketing legend and World Land Trust patron, David Gower as well as numerous VIPs and celebrities from all over India. These included: The Maharaja of Udaipur - His Highness Arvind Singh Mewar, Princess of Panna and Princess Diya Kumari, Indian film actress Tisca Chopra, Sophie Choudhry, Kaykasshan Patel, fashion designer Pria Kataria Puri, renowned writer Shobha De, Shaina NC, Natasha and Adar Poonawala, Aarti Surendranath, Rhea Pillai, Madhu, Laila Lamba, Malvika Sanghvi, Mona Narang, Debbie Hitkari to name a few.
Ian Harebottle, CEO of Gemfields states;
‘We are thrilled with the results of the auction, especially as this is the first time that auction of this kind has been held in India. We are honoured to have worked with so many great partners on this project, from Indian’s top jewellers and retailers, Arzan Khambatta, our ambassador Madhuri Dixit to Jaguar Land Rover, Gemological Institute of America (India), Taj Mahal Palace Hotels and Resorts and Sotheby’s who provided the auctioneer. We are proud to play a small part in being able to raise critical funds for the World Land Trust’s Indian Elephant Corridor Project and look forward to continuing our work together to ensure the survival of natural habitats.’
Speaking at the auction, David Gower, who is well known in India since his cricketing days, said:
‘This is Indian land, Indian natural heritage and World Land Trust are of the opinion that the Indian people are the best ones to protect and conserve it for future generations. But with India being home to 60% of the world’s remaining Asian Elephants, their survival in India is critical to the survival of the species as a whole. World Land Trust is dedicated to supporting Wildlife Trust of India in the mission to secure a future for Elephants.’
Full Press release: http://www.worldlandtrust.org/documents/emeralds-for-elephants-post-event-pr.pdf (47KB) (opens in new window)