BENGALURU: A tusker died while trying to return to the forest after raiding crops in Bandipur Tiger Reserve (BTR) on Tuesday morning. The incident came to light when a patrolling team saw the sight of the jumbo stuck between two rail barricades. Forest department officials had to cut out a portion of the barricade to free the elephant. Officials said the tusker died on the spot because of the shock and after its head hit the rail barricade. BTR director S R Natesh told TNIE that the incident happened in Moleyaru range.
The tusker slipped while trying to cross over the rail. The tusker was trying to climb over but the land was slippery due to which he slipped and fell, and died. A portion of the rail, near a mound of mud, was slippery. He explained that there were many gaps between the rail barricades which elephants used to enter or leave the forest patches to raid crops in the areas surrounding the forest patch. Another senior forest department official added that the staffers had started surveying the areas along the rail barricades to find risky or vulnerable locations which needed to be checked so that no such untoward incidents repeat. “Elephants are very smart animals.
They come up with solutions to cross over no matter what the type of barricades are, but casualties are rare,” the official added. The forest department has undertaken the task of erecting rail barricades along the boundaries of forest patches to reduce the number of man- elephant conflict cases. There have been many instances where elephants, including calves, have been seen crossing over the barricades. There are also instances where elephants have died while trying to cross over, by getting stuck between them.
Four held, tusks seized
Mysuru: The forest department arrested four people for trying to sell tusks near a railway bridge on the outskirts of the city. The accused, Prestine Silva and Jayaprakash, both hail from Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala, while the other two, Mohan and Ramesh, are residents of Udayagiri. The officials received information that the accused were negotiating the ivory for `20,000 a kilogram. During the interrogation, they found that prime accused Silva was a habitual offender and had similar cases booked against him in Kerala. He had teamed up with Jayaprakash, and Ramesh and Mohan, who were sculptors in the city, to sell it to potential customers.