Bhubaneswar, December 31 (Localwire): The human-elephant conflict in Odisha’s Angul district has reached a flashpoint with the jumbos going berserk and killing three people in as many days.
This has unleashed a reign of terror in the district, which along with neighbouring Dhenkanal district has been identified as one of the worst elephants’ depredation zones in the state.
According to sources, a tribal woman Golapi Bora (42) was gored to death by a wild elephant early morning on Tuesday at Gopalpur village under Purunakote forest range of the district.
The victim died on the spot as the furious animal picked and tossed her in the air. She suffered serious head injuries and bled to death, officials stated.
In a similar incident, one person each was killed by the elephant in the district on Sunday and on Monday.
The spots where the tragic deaths were reported are close to elephants’ habitation corridor.
The animals stray into the agriculture field nearby to devour the crop field, which leads to a frequent outbreak of human-elephant conflict, officials stated.
According to officials, a team of skilled elephant chasers has driven the elephant away to the forest area.
The team is camping in the village to thwart possible straying of the animal after the sunset, sources said.
Odisha with 1,976 elephants is home to 70% of the total jumbo population in eastern India and it has been experiencing an increase in human-animal conflict with elephant depredation spreading to 26 out of 30 districts of the state.
The wild animals often wander into the villages searching for food due to shrinking habitats.
The protected parks and wildlife sanctuaries conferred habitation corridors of the elephants, face the onslaught of massive encroachment from people who live and forage, or graze cattle in the forests.
The human-elephant conflict has taken a toll of 370 human lives since 2015, while 740 pachyderms perished in the state due to several factors, including poaching and electrocution during the last decade.