BENGALURU: Gururaj (52), a watcher at Nagarhole Tiger Reserve, died in an elephant attack on Thursday while on duty at Doddalla beat. The incident happened between 3 and 4 pm when he was on foot patrolling along with two other watchers. Gururaj sustained severe injuries while the other two escaped with minor ones. He succumbed to his injuries on the way to the hospital.
Gururaj had served as a cook in the reserve forest for more than 25 years and was made to undertake patrolling from the last three years. “It was shocking that he was made a part of the patrolling team. He did not have proper training in handling such situations. He did not run to escape, which perhaps led to this tragic incident,” said a retired forest official. Gururaj, despite his long years of service, was still a contract employee. A request will be made to the government to give him exgratia and his family employment, said a senior forest official.