Jamshedpur, Feb 5: In view of spurt in incidents of trampling deaths near a village in Chakulia bordering Bengal, forest department has decided to carry out a joint drive with the forest department of Bengal for driving away the herd.
The herd of three wild elephants has been causing havoc near Bankati village since the past one week is to be driven into a deep jungle by the joint team of forest departments.
The herd of three elephants which is anchored in a small patch of jungle near Bankati village at Chakulia in Ghatshila sub-division has so far killed three persons, including a five-year-old girl and damaging houses as well as paddy stocks in Bankati village during past few days.
The herd had damaged mud-houses and destroyed stock of paddy straying into human habitat and later it has started killing the villagers.
When on the one hand, the local villagers are panic stricken anticipating sudden intrusion of the wild elephants into their villages, on the other hand, they are getting increasingly angry at the sight of the damaged paddy filed.
According to a senior forest officer, the tuskers are moving from one place to another because this is the migratory season which will come to an end in March next year, but he claimed this was the first time that so huge a herd has come to village like this.
“As we cannot stop the elephants from migrating from one jungle to another, but can safeguard the villages from the tuskers’ attack on the villages as well as the paddy fields, we have set up separate teams for tuskers- driving wherever the chances of the menace is maximum,” said another forest official.
Divisional forest officer, Jamshedpur, Abhishek Kumar said they the forest department’s quick response team (QRT) had driven away the herd twice just after getting complaints of house and paddy stock being damaged by the herd, but it does return to the same village again and again.
” As per our study the herd has become accustomed to the Bankati village and getting increasingly violent, we have decided to carry out a drive jointly by the forest department of Bengal. We will drive the small herd of killer elephants to a deep jungle,” said Abhishek.
The DFO, on being queried, refused the name of the jungle in which they want to drive the herd, claiming that if the name of the jungle is declared, the villagers surrounding the jungle will pose a problem and will not allow them to carry out the drive.