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Man-elephant conflict claims 2 more lives in Udalguri dist

By Correspondent

KALAIGAON, Nov 12 - The ongoing Human Elephant Conflict (HEC) has taken a serious turn in Udalguri district with the death of two more people last night.

According to information available, one Nandeswar Rabha (55) and Lohit Rabha (45) were trampled to death by wild elephants at Natunbasti village near No. 3 Bhutiachang at 9 pm.

According to the villagers, the victims were trying to chase away the wild elephants along with other ruralites from their paddy fields. Unfortunately, they did not see the wild elephants standing close by because of darkness.

In a previous incident this month, one Kuli Orang (60) was killed by wild elephants at Segunbari near the SSB camp on November 3 at 6 am. The victim was fishing in a stream near the Khalingduar Reserve Forest.

Four more people were killed by wild elephants in the district last month. So far, 15 people and four wild elephants lost their lives in Udalguri till now during the current year. People alleged that the Forest Department under the BTC administration has failed to take any remedial steps and only tendered excuses, including lack of manpower, etc.

The haggard locals also claimed that the BTC administration has never been serious in the matter of unabated destruction and encroachment on most forest land, resulting in blockage of elephant corridors in the district.

Instead of evicting encroachments, the BTC authority has been allotting forest land to several religious organisations, including Brahmo Ashram and Baba Ramdev (Chouhan) at Neewly PRF near Samrang along the Indo-Bhutan border.

According to wildlife experts, most of the human deaths have occurred due to ignorance and lack of awareness among the victims.

Though HEC has been a very serious issue, it is near impossible to end the conflict, except by creation of awareness among people living in such areas. There is no other solution to control the conflict, except that people have to learn to avoid confrontation with the wild elephants and try to adopt ways for peaceful coexistence, which could at least minimise the casualties, wildlife experts feel.

According to available data, so far 104 people and 49 wild elephants lost their lives in Udalguri district alone since 2012.

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Man-elephant conflict claims 2 more lives in Udalguri dist

KALAIGAON, Nov 12 - The ongoing Human Elephant Conflict (HEC) has taken a serious turn in Udalguri district with the death of two more people last night.

According to information available, one Nandeswar Rabha (55) and Lohit Rabha (45) were trampled to death by wild elephants at Natunbasti village near No. 3 Bhutiachang at 9 pm.

According to the villagers, the victims were trying to chase away the wild elephants along with other ruralites from their paddy fields. Unfortunately, they did not see the wild elephants standing close by because of darkness.

In a previous incident this month, one Kuli Orang (60) was killed by wild elephants at Segunbari near the SSB camp on November 3 at 6 am. The victim was fishing in a stream near the Khalingduar Reserve Forest.

Four more people were killed by wild elephants in the district last month. So far, 15 people and four wild elephants lost their lives in Udalguri till now during the current year. People alleged that the Forest Department under the BTC administration has failed to take any remedial steps and only tendered excuses, including lack of manpower, etc.

The haggard locals also claimed that the BTC administration has never been serious in the matter of unabated destruction and encroachment on most forest land, resulting in blockage of elephant corridors in the district.

Instead of evicting encroachments, the BTC authority has been allotting forest land to several religious organisations, including Brahmo Ashram and Baba Ramdev (Chouhan) at Neewly PRF near Samrang along the Indo-Bhutan border.

According to wildlife experts, most of the human deaths have occurred due to ignorance and lack of awareness among the victims.

Though HEC has been a very serious issue, it is near impossible to end the conflict, except by creation of awareness among people living in such areas. There is no other solution to control the conflict, except that people have to learn to avoid confrontation with the wild elephants and try to adopt ways for peaceful coexistence, which could at least minimise the casualties, wildlife experts feel.

According to available data, so far 104 people and 49 wild elephants lost their lives in Udalguri district alone since 2012.

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