ROURKELA: After almost 64 hours of chase, the Sundargarh administration finally heaved a sigh of relief after the herd of 10 elephants was driven to the other side of river Sankh on Tuesday night.
Efforts are underway to guide the animals to Birmitrapur range of Rourkela forest division. The target of the officials is to chase the herd towards adjacent Jharkhand forest.
Rourkela DFO Sanjeet Kumar said Monday night’s drive saw the herd moving from Vedvyas College on the outskirts of Rourkela City. Walking along river Sankh, the elephants reached Mandiakudar and the drive was stopped at around 5 am on Tuesday. He said several attempts to guide the herd to cross Sankh failed on Monday night due to heavy current in the river.
The DFO said the drive resumed at 6.30 pm on Tuesday with new strategy to identify routes which were earlier used by the herd. In addition to this, the authorities of Mandira dam were asked to stop release of water and with the water level of Sankh decreasing, the herd crossed the river at around 7 pm.
The herd, which had twice entered into Rourkela City in 2013, reached Vedvyas temple area on Sunday morning and stayed within a vicinity of one km till late Monday night.