SAMBALPUR/JHARSUGUDA : Four elephants, including a tusker, were killed after being run over by a speeding train at village Telidihi under Bagdihi forest range in Jharsuguda district in the wee hours on Monday.Sources said the elephants including two male and two female elephants were hit by the Howrah-Mumbai Mail while crossing the track. As per the forest officials, the elephants were from Bagdihi forest range under Jharsuguda Forest Division. Among the victims were a male elephant of about 15 years, another male elephant of five years, a female elephant of 25 years and a female calf of about one year.
Local villagers first spotted the elephants lying on the railway track and informed the forest officials who rushed to the spot and removed the bodies from the track. “Since it is an elephant corridor, we had asked the Railways to bring down the speed of trains in that area. However, we will look into the circumstances that led to the accident,” said Assistant Conservator of Forest, Jharsuguda Forest Division, Pradip Kumar Dhal.Jharsuguda Railway Station Manager TKN Naik said loco pilot of Howrah-Mumbai Mail MC Khrewal informed the guard P Maheswar about the incident. Maheswar reported the matter at Dhutura Railway Station.
The incident caused disruption in the movement of trains in the section that comes under South-Eastern Railway. Railway services normalised after the bodies were removed from the tracks. The bodies were buried after autopsy.Last year, three elephants including two calves, had lost their lives in two different incidents in the same area. While two elephant calves had died after falling into a trench, dug near the railway line for laying the cables, another elephant had died after coming in contact with 33 kv electric line while crossing the area at night.