Devotees and public scurried for cover as the elephant of the Sri Mahalinga Swamy temple at Tiruvidaimarudur ran amok after shoving away its mahout on Monday.

Gomathy, aged around 60 years, was standing near the temple entrance when around noon it suddenly panicked, shoved away its mahout Thiyagu who tried to clam it down and started to run down the main street.

Petrified public and devotees, who had gathered in large numbers due to the long weekend holidays, tried to run for cover and escape the pachyderm’s fury. A devotee, along with mahout Thiyagu, sustained simple injuries in the melee before Thiyagu and his father reined in the enraged elephant in a short while.

The mahouts then pacified Gomathy who calmed down after the run, took it to the elephant shed and got it tethered to the stone with chain much to the relief of the temple authorities and public.

Normality was fast returning to Gomathy, according to the mahouts.