RAIGARH: Two persons, including a forest guard, were trampled to death by a wild elephant in separate places in Chhattisgarh's Raigarh district, an official said Thursday.
Forest guard Mukesh Pandey (32) came face-to-face with the pachyderm near Podi village on Wednesday when he was returning after informing locals about the movement of a tusker in the area and preventive measures to be taken to avoid human-elephant conflict, divisional forest officer Pranay Mishra said.
The jumbo caught hold of Pandey, smashed him on the ground with its trunks before trampling him to death, he said.
Later at the nearby Kotmar village, the same elephant attacked a group of five villagers who were returning home after attending a funeral, he said.
While four of them managed to escape, the elephant caught hold of Bhujendra Rathiya (22) and stomped him to death, the official said.
Later, forest and police personnel reached the two spots but it took them time to recover the bodies as the elephant kept moving in the area for a long time, he said.
The bodies were handed over to their relatives on Thursday after the post mortem, he said. The forest department has announced a compensation of Rs 4 lakh to the kin of each of the deceased.
The elephant which attacked the villagers and forest guard apparently got separated from its herd and was roaming around the villages since last few days following which the locals were asked to stay alert, the official added.
Several incidents of human-elephant conflict have been reported in the past from the thick forested northern Chhattisgarh, consisting of Surguja, Surajpur, Korba, Raigarh, Jashpur, Balrampur and Korea districts.
The region has witnessed several killings of tribals and widespread damage to houses and crops by rogue elephants.