Nuapada: Residents of Sargimunda and Runibasa village in the district are in panic after a herd of elephants are on move in hamlets close to the Khariar forest division.
We spotted seven elephants comprising four tuskers and three elephant calves, informed a few locals. Forest officials who rushed to the spot after the information said that the herd has arrived from jungles in Bolangir district.
"The elephants have come from the Tandel forest of Bolangir district via Dharamsagar and Chandupala. The herd crossed Indra river and entered into Sarigimunda and Karlakote area," Jayaram Sabar, Ranger of Khariar forest division explained.
Meanwhile forest officials are keeping a close watch on the elephants.
"A team of forest officials have been engaged to chase away the elephants. We are also careful that the wild animals are not hurt while straying into unknown areas. Our officials are also making efforts to avoid any damage to the village properties," informed Sabar adding that it is getting difficult to control the crowd from different villages who have gathered to see the elephant herd.
Earlier on April 5, a herd of 22 elephants from Jharkhand had entered the Sorei village and then moved on to Tuntuna and Sashang villages in Keonjhar district triggering panic among locals.
Meanwhile, a man, Tanka Kerketa of Lodhabasa village under Rajgangpur in Sundergarh district was today trampled to death by an elephant. Kerketa had gone to attend natures's call when he was attacked by the elephant. He died on the way to Rajgangpur hospital. On being informed, forest officials rushed to the spot and drove away the wild elephant away.