RANCHI: As many as five elephants died of electrocution after coming in contact with 33,000 volt overhead wire in Jharkhand. The incident took place early in the morning on Tuesday in the jungles of Musabani under Ghatsila sub-division of East Singhbhum district.
Earlier too, two wild elephants allegedly had died due to electrocution in the region on November 1 and November 2. According to locals, five wild tuskers, including two calves, were electrocuted by a high-tension over head wire that had fallen on the forest stretch. The high-tension line had been drawn reportedly to feed the power supply to Hindustan Copper Ltd in Ghatsila.
Locals claimed that a section of villagers in Mosabani were driving a herd of 12 wild elephants away towards the forest this morning and incidentally discovered five elephants lying dead in the jungles. The villagers have found a pair of fallen high-tension wires entangled with the dead elephants’ carcass.
“Despite repeated complaints to the electricity department to raise the height of the overhead wire, no action was taken in this regard due to which the five elephants were electrocuted,” said a villager requesting anonymity. A herd of elephants, about 8 in number, have been roaming in the area for the last few weeks which has panicked the villagers, he added.
Meanwhile, forest department has asked the villagers to remain alert at night as there is a possibility that the remaining three elephants may come back looking for the other members of the herd and may get angered and spoil the atmosphere in the region.
Forest officials confirmed that five elephants, including 2 calves, have died due to electrocution. They, however, informed that the process of identifying sagged overhead wires was on and they had also submitted a list of 66 locations in Chakulia to the electricity department to tighten them after the November 1 and 2 incidents.
“The process of identifying the sagged wires in Musabani area was on…in between the incident took place which is really very unfortunate,” said Jamshedpur DFO Mamta Priyadarshi. They have also called the General Manager of Jharkhand Bijli Vitaran Nigam Limited (JBVNL) and officials of HCL as well, to feel the seriousness of the matter and take adequate measures in this regard, she added. The DFO said that she has also alerted the field staff to increase patrolling in the region.
‘No action by electricity board’
A villager said that Despite repeated complaints to the electricity department to raise the height of the overhead wire, no action was taken in this regard due to which the five elephants were electrocuted. Earlier, two wild jumbos had died due to electrocution in the region on November 1 and 2.