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Africa's Real-Life Mowgli Loves to Live Amid Trees, Prefers Grass to Home-cooked Food

Eli loves eating bananas.

Eli loves eating bananas.

A film has also been made on Eli by Afrimax TV. If his family members and villagers are to be believed, it is said that Eli is even faster than the world’s fastest sprinter Usain Bolt.

Several movies and cartoons have been made on Mowgli, the famous character from Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book. The fictional character has been showered with lots of love by his fans across the globe. But today, we are going to tell you about a real life Mowgli, who on the other hand is drawing hatred for his fellow villagers.

This real life Mowgli, known as Eli, lives in a village in Africa. Unlike any normal person, Eli cannot speak like humans and loves to eat grass like animals. Zanziman Ellie of Rwanda is now 21-year-old and he was born with a disorder called microcephaly, a condition where the head is much smaller the body. The disorder has also rendered Eli, as he is known locally, speechless since childhood.

“People tease him with names like monkey, ape and Chimpanzee for Eli’s love for the jungle. People do not welcome him or wish to be around him. Because of Eli people even taunt us,” said Eli’s mother, talking to the media.

Eli’s mother further added that her son does not like the food she cooks for him but prefers eating green grass and spending time in the jungle.

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“Eli is my youngest son but very different from others. Eli loves eating bananas. He has never been to any school and he cannot even speak our language. It is very difficult for us to communicate with him. He prefers staying alone and away from people,” added the real life Mowgli’s mother.

Narrating her ordeal, she added, “Eli prefers staying in the jungle than home. Every opportunity he gets he escapes to the jungle. We have to run behind him to catch him and bring him back home. He has learnt the tricks of surviving in the jungle.”

Eli’s mother further added that sometimes Eli manages to escape by hiding in the dense forest. “He can stay in the jungle for days without even returning home. We worry for his life as the jungle is filled with dangerous animals,” added Eli’s mother.

A film has also been made on Eli by Afrimax TV. If his family members and villagers are to be believed, it is said that Eli is even faster than the world’s fastest sprinter Usain Bolt.

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first published:August 05, 2021, 17:27 IST