Pradeep Pattanayak

The residents of Dharakote, Shergarh, and Sadangipalli areas under the Aska range of South Ghumusar forest division in Ganjam district are spending sleepless nights as a herd of 12 elephants including two tuskers has unleashed a reign of terror. 

According to sources, the herd of pachyderms first strayed into the Athagharia rural forest and destroyed the crops in adjacent farmlands. Thereafter, they went to Mallijhar forest. The wild animals have reportedly pulled down some villagers’ houses and devoured the harvested paddy. 

Also Read: Poachers ‘electrocute’ elephant for tusks in Odisha 

It is also reported from Sadangipalli village that the herd attacked a cyclist, leaving him seriously injured. 

Upon being informed, a team of the forest department has camped in the village and doing everything possible to drive the herd away into the nearby jungle. 

“We have been creating awareness among the villagers through the public address system. We are asking people not to go into the jungle and take their harvested crops to safety. We have formed three teams and trying to bring the herd to their corridor so that they can go on their way,” said Aska ranger, Pramod Panda.

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