Elephant dies after being hit by goods train in Odisha; officials yet to wake up

The incident took place on Wednesday night when 10 elephants were crossing the railway tracks near Sadar forest range and the empty goods train was heading towards Nayagarh from Jakhapura.

Published: 22nd November 2018 03:14 PM  |   Last Updated: 23rd November 2018 07:35 AM   |  A+A-

elephant death

Image for representational purpose only.


BHUBANESWAR: The death of a female jumbo in Keonjhar due to train collision on Wednesday night has raised serious questions on the safety of elephants in the State.

The incident has once again exposed the highhandedness of Forest department and Railways officials who seem to have not learnt any lesson from the past incidents. In a similar incident when four elephants were killed after being hit by a goods train in Jharsuguda in April, both the Forest and Railways authorities were engaged in a blame game holding each other accountable for the mishap.

The situation this time is not much different. Both have come up with a clarification making it clear that they are not to be blamed for the incident.

The office of the Divisional Forest Officer, Keonjhar in a statement issued to media said all protocols regarding the movement of the elephant near the railway track were followed and were intimated to the Railway authorities.

The East Coast Railway (ECoR) authorities also came with a clarification that the speed of the goods train that collided with the elephant was well within the caution limit of 50 kmph as given by the Forest department and was found to be moving at a speed of 43 kmph at the time of accident. Amid the blame-game, many questions remain unanswered.

During Jharsuguda train mishap, the Forest officials had stated that there is a clear instruction to the railway divisions across India to blow horn and restrict speed limit to 40 kmph in elephant corridors. In such a scenario, how a speed limit of 50 kmph was fixed for the goods train on the route in Keonjhar, wildlife experts asked. Besides, they questioned why Railways doesn’t have its own standard rules and regulations to restrict speed limits of trains in elephant corridors.

The incident, they said, is a fallout of lack of coordination between the two departments as the Railways has control rooms at major elephant passages, while Forest department has also field staff in elephant corridors.

Meanwhile, Odisha which has turned into a deathbed for the jumbos has lost five elephants due to train accidents so far this year. It has lost 10 elephants in a span of only 24 days between October 27 and November 21 due to electrocution, train accident and other mishaps.

Stay up to date on all the latest Odisha news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp