Photographer Anil Prabhakar captured the emotional moment between man and animal while on a safari in Indonesia.
An encounter between an orangutan and a human seemingly in danger has captured hearts all over the world. CNN reports that the emotional moment was taken by photographer Anil Prabhakar, a geologist from India. He was on a safari at a conservation forest run by the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation (BOS) where he was fortunate to capture the touching moment between man and animal. The brilliant photo showed the ape stretching its arm to help a man out of snake-infested water. According to Metro, the man was part of the conservation project and had been tasked with clearing out the snakes that are dangerous to orangutans.
"There was a report of snakes in that area so the warden came over and he's clearing snakes," Prabhakar told CNN. "I saw an orangutan come very close to him and just offer him his hand." He added that the muddy waters made it difficult for the warden to move, and the gentle ape who had been watching him for some time decided to lend him a helping hand. Prabhakar said, "It seemed as if the orangutan was saying 'May I help you'? to the man. I really wasn't able to click. I never expected something like that. I just grabbed that moment. It was really emotional."
The warden refused to accept the orangutan's gesture. Instead, he moved away from it and got out of the water. When Prabhakar asked the warden his reason for doing so, the warden replied, "This is not a zoo or a park, it is a protected survival forest, and the orangutans brought here are either rescued from forest fires or from being hunted by local people, hence they suffer from trauma or injuries. They are totally wild in nature. So, they are here to get them to adapt to the wild, and once they do so, they will be released back into the forest."
He then took to Instagram to share his amazing photo, which went viral. It has been liked more than 30,000 times. He shared it with the caption: Let me help you? : Once Humanity dying in Mankind, sometimes animals are guiding us back to our basics. While most praised this incredible photo, there were a number of naysayers as well.
One commented on how he chose to take a photo instead of helping the man. Kou Si Yuan wrote: So the one who shoots the pic didn’t give a hand? Just stood there and watch him wading? Or you guys were mean to seduce the kind animal to rescue you then you could do a good pic? Kenny Tims added: Just curious, how do you know that the circumstance is what you're saying ? Seriously did the orangutan say that it is trying to rescue the man from snake-infested water? That man doesn't look distressed nor do you see any snakes.
Prabhakar responded to the comments that asked why he took a photo instead of helping the warden. "I was on the other side of the river and I could see that the warden was not in any immediate danger. I was five to six meters away from him and captured the once-in-a-lifetime moment with a telelens. The picture was taken in September 2019, but I shared it recently with the caption. Orangutans have been subjected to so much torture from humans, and even then the animal did not hesitate to lend a helping hand to the person. Even though people have lost humanity, this shows us that we need to be more considerate towards everyone."