Elephants damage crops in Nilagiri; compensation within 7 days assured

Balasore: After 10 days of operation, the forest department personnel finally managed to drive away the herd of elephants that damaged several acres of crop in Nilagiri region and assured compensation within seven days of completion of the crop damage assessment.

The jumbo herd had strayed into the Nilagiri area from neighbouring Jharkhand on November 13. Since then, the forest department officials along with locals, revenue department and police were on a mission to drive away the jumbos from the human settlement by using fire crackers, beating drums and flash lights.

The pachyderms were reportedly driven away to Mayurbhanj passing through Patana, Kathaphala, Pundolo, Durgadebi and Gopalpur forest division.

‘Mission Gajendra’ was taken up by the forest department to drive away the herd, which had 56 elephants, from the region. After the elephant herd will be driven away, the forest and revenue department will make an assessment of the crop damaged in the area and adequate compensation will be provided within seven days,” Nilagiri ranger, Sukumar D as said.

On the other hand, locals have taken a sigh of relief after the jumbos were warded off from the human settlement.

“We were having a harrowing time and had sleepless nights because of the jumbos. We are now feeling much relieved,” said a local.