Man-elephant conflict in Ganjam district

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Berhampur: The conflict between men and elephants came to the fore once again in Ganjam district when wild tuskers trampled to death a 57-year-old man and injured a girl at a village.

Dandasi Muduli (57) died on the spot when he was attacked by a herd of wild elephants outside village Biripur on Thursday while on way to a pond for a bath. Before the incident, the tuskers had attacked a girl who was admitted to the sub-divisional hospital at Chhatrapur.

Her condition was stated to be out of danger. The incident has triggered panic among the villagers as the four-member elephant herd was believed to be camping near the village.
The villagers staged a road block at their village and did not allow the forest personnel to take the body of the man for post-mortem for several hours.

Sub-Collector, Chhatrapur, A K Jena, sub-divisional police officer, Chhatrapur, Shantanu Padhy, and forest officers rushed to the spot and assured compensation to family members of the deceased.

Besides the compensation, members of the deceased should be provided a government job and monthly pension must be given to the widow, demanded panchayat samiti chairman of Ganjam, Surath Pahan.

He demanded permanent solution of the elephant menace in the area. Though wild elephants had taken at least seven lives and wounded 15 persons in the area, besides destroying crops in the last three to four years, the government has not taken steps for a permanent solution to the animal menace, he alleged.

At least 25 elephants divided into three to four herds wreck havoc in Ganjam, Humma, Chhatrapur and Khallikote blocks. The elephants are suspected to have migrated from Chandaka elephant reserve, forest officials said.

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