Sunday, May 16, 2021
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Footfall at Dalma wildlife sanctuary declines due to elephant menace

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Jamshedpur : The footfall to the scenic Dalma wildlife sanctuary has reduced. Sources informed that Dalma elephant Don, a 50 year old tusker has spread fear among the visitors.

Sources informed that people are in near-by villages are of havoc due to the menace. Sometimes villagers migrate to safer places for a week or more to avoid the sudden night-time attacks of the wild elephant herds.

“The return of ‘Don’ to Dalma is a matter of great concern for us. Our lives are at risk due to rampaging elephants. Elephants regularly venture into villages, destroy houses, damage standing crops and even trample people to death. We are forced to work like a ‘night guard’ to save our lives and crops” said Ramesh Munda.

Dalma range officer Mangal Kachhap said that over 100 people used to visit the sanctuary and watch elephants. While some used to stay at Pinderbera guest house, others came and left by the evening. But now visitors seem to be avoiding the sanctuary.

Though the fresh herd of tuskers has not yet killed anyone due to the alertness of the villagers, but its presence close to the human habitat may take a toll. The tuskers whose behaviour is a bit eccentric are targeting to stomach jackfruits and stock of paddy while pulling down the houses.

“We are forced to spend sleepless nights. Our lives are at risk due to rampaging elephants. Elephants regularly venture into villages, destroy houses, damage standing crops and even trample people to death. We are forced to work like a ‘night guard’ to save our lives and crops” said Rajeswar Munda, a villager.

He said that rampaging elephants are a cause of concern. Some measures need to be adopted and there is need to do more to protect the people. It is learnt that the movement of the killer horde has increased in that part of the forest area in the last few days. The villagers are upset over the incident.

Stressing upon the need for the anti-deportation team, the a forest official said that the herds of elephants when come closer to the human habitat tends to search for food, and when they fail to get adequate food, they destroy the houses for eating up the paddy stock at the households.

He said that they were trying to save the paddy fields by mobilising villagers . But, they are also contemplating to press into service elephant divers from Bengal.

“We have been asked villagers to make red chilly cakes so as to ward off the elephants. We are also providing them crackers and burnt mobile so that they can drive away the pachyderms, ” he said.

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