Bolangir: A herd of wild elephants has been creating havoc in Ramoda and Routa Munda village under Turekela block of Bolangir district. The herd strayed into villages and destroyed acres of paddy and vegetable crops.
The villagers alleged that they have been spending sleepless night for the last 15 days to guard their crops and houses after the 30 jumbos strayed into the area in search of food.
According to reports, the pachyderms entered paddy fields in Ramoda and Routa Munda village destroying standing crops and harvested paddy stocked after cutting.
The herd of elephants have also damaged hundreds of acres of vegetable farming in the area.
The villagers alleged that despite repeated complaints, the forest department is yet to take any concrete steps to drive away the elephants and ensure protection from the pachyderms.
Similarly, villagers in Binika block are also facing the menace as a herd of 60 elephants is running amok in the area for 17 days. The residents also alleged apathy of forest officials towards their plight.
According to reports, life of villagers in Bankighiradi, Sarangpali, Kukudajhuli, Balaranga, Sarguna and Manigaon villages have been on the edge as the marauding jumbos have reportedly caused large-scale crop destruction in the areas. The rampaging wild animals have also destroyed crops on several acres of land.
They had demanded compensation from the department for the losses they have suffered due to the wild elephant menace.
(Edited By Ramakant Biswas)