Kendrapara: Crocodile attacks have created panic in the human settlements near Bhitarkanika National Park in Kendrapara district. The rise in water level at river Brahmani and Baitarani during rainy season paves the way for the crocodiles to move to bathing ghats at Aul and Rajnagar, which is visited by the villagers on a daily basis.
According to reports, the barrier and wire net set up by forest department is not capable to check the entry of the crocodiles. The barriers at many bathing ghats have broken due to which there is a rise in human-crocodile encounters.
"The villagers use river water for their daily chores but there is no security as the barrier has damaged and crocodiles are spotted regularly," said a villager, Bhakta Nayak.
Forest department had constructed more than 59 bathing ghats in the area for the benefit of the people. But Divisional Forest Officer of Rajnagar has also agreed that the bathing ghats have dilapidated in absence of required maintenance.
Talking to OTV, DFO Rajnagar Bimal Prasanna Acharya said, "Nearly 50 bathing ghats have been constructed and there is scope for construction of more. We are conducting awareness programme regularly so that people will be safe from the attacks. The lifetime of the bathing ghats is three to five years which can be extended if the locals maintain it."