Female elephant killed after being hit by train

Keonjhar: In a tragic incident, a female elephant was killed after being hit by a train near Ramachandrapur under Sadar forest range of Keonjhar district Wednesday night.

According to reports, the incident occurred at around 10.30 pm when a herd of ten elephants was crossing the railway tracks and the goods train coming from Joda rammed into the pachyderm. However, nine other jumbos had a narrow escape in the incident.

After getting information, Forest department officials including Ranger and Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) and senior officials of Railways rushed to the spot.

Meanwhile, the Forest department booked the train driver for dereliction in duty as the concerned department had earlier cautioned the Railways about the movement of elephants in the area.

“The incident took place at around 9.55 pm yesterday and we had informed the railway control room at Khurda about the movement of elephants in the area at around 6.20 pm. Within 25 minutes, the caution orders were put into force and the loco pilot was intimated about the elephant movement,” informed Keonjhar Divisional Forest Officer (DFO), Santosh Kumar Joshi.

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“We have detained the loco pilot of the train and recorded his statement. Further investigation is underway,” he added.

Sources said in past few days pachyderms have been straying into Dimba, Naranpur, Jamunalia Badaposi, Ramachandrapur and Basantpur under Sadar range area of the district in search of food.