SRIKAKULAM:In yet another incident of man-animal conflict, a herd of four elephants strayed into tribal habitations ravaging crops at K Gummada in Sitampeta mandal in the early hours of Friday. The jumbos damaged large cashew, mango and banana plantations causing huge loss to the farmers apart from destroying a cattle shed
The herd was moving freely in Mettuggode and Peddarama villages, striking fear among the tribal populace. Even after daybreak, the pachyderms were seen roaming around the village outskirts. As the Tribals made loud noise to shoo them off, the elephants slipped into the nearby Bellumada hills. Though the elephants returned to the forests the Tribals were living in constant fear. The jumbos are found in large herds in Sitampeta, Palakonda, Kottur and Veeraghattam mandals.
Meanwhile the Tribals lamented that the government was not keen to check the menace. As elephants stray into habitations often, they are not able to start Podu cultivation. The jumbos are more menacing during monsoon and winter seasons. In summer they make such loud trumpeting from the outskirts that people run for their lives. On receiving information, forest officials visited the villages and assured help to the villagers.