Elephant electrocuted


The carcass of the elephant. Picture by Ritupallab Saikia

Golaghat: An elephant was electrocuted at Bijulee tea estate near Numaligarh under Murphuloni beat office here allegedly because of the negligence of Assam Power Distribution Company Ltd (APDCL).

The elephant was electrocuted around 2am on Sunday night after it came into contact with a live high-tension electric cable.

The residents alleged that despite being informed, forest department personnel arrived late at the spot with veterinary doctors from the district headquarters.

They carried out a post-mortem and cremated the elephant on the spot.

The divisional forest officer of Golaghat forest division, Gunin Saikia, told The Telegraph that the female elephant, aged about 19 years, had come out of Nambor sanctuary in search of food. It got separated from the herd and was unfortunately trapped between two electrical poles and electrocuted.

“Due to man-elephant conflict in Numaligarh, we have deployed four teams in the area. They are on constant patrol to prevent any eventualities,” Saikia said.

Regarding the filing of an FIR against APDCL for their alleged negligence which led to the death of the elephant, Saikia said he had asked the range officer to investigate the matter. He will place his report before the district-level co ordination committee on man-elephant conflict.

“We have urged APDCL’s Golaghat division a number of times to raise the height of the power lines and repair the sagging lines and posts but nothing fruitful has been done. The APDCL needs to take it seriously,” Saikia said.

On August 9, 2013, a joint co-ordination committee had been formed to monitor the maintenance of transmission lines to ensure prevention of electrocution of wild elephants. The committee, which was headed by the Golaghat deputy commissioner and comprised the assistant general manager of APDCL, Golaghat electrical division, divisional forest officer and representatives of local NGOs as members, had been formed according to a notification of the the department of forests and environment.

RITUPALLAB SAIKIA Telegraph India

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