Rashmi Ranjan

It seems there is no let up in human-animal conflict in Kendrapara as the coastal-Odisha district reported third death due to crocodile attack in 16 days. This time an elderly man fell prey to the crocodile attack at Ghagaradiha village in the district, on Thursday.

The deceased has been identified as Gangadhara Tarai.

According to sources, Tarai had gone to Brahmani river to attend nature's call when a crocodile dragged him into the river and he went missing.

On being informed about the incident, Fire Services personnel rushed to the village and launched a frantic search. After hours of search operation, Tarai’s body was fished out from the river.

“When he (Tarai) went inside the water, he was attacked by a crocodile. Hearing his scream, I rushed to the river bank. But, by the time I reached there it was too late,” said Pratap Majhi, an eyewitness.

“Crocodile attack has claimed three lives in three weeks. One woman died in Rajnagar, a minor body lost his life in Nimapur and now an elderly person died in Ghagaradiha. But, the forest department officials are sitting idle as if nothing has happened,” said Ganeswar Behera, former MLA.

Notably, one Ashutosh Acharya, a Class 5 student of Nimpur village under Pattamundai block in Kendrapara district, was allegedly dragged and killed by a crocodile on June 14.

Similarly on June 21, a woman, identified as Sita Das from Hatiagadi village under Rajnagar block in the district fell victim to a similar attack in the district.

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