KENDRAPARA: A wild boar that injured an elderly woman was lynched by villagers of Balapala village within Bhitarkanika National Park here on Wednesday.Sixty-year-old Amri Sahani sustained serious injuries after the boar attacked her in the morning. She was plucking vegetables from her farmland when the incident took place. As the news spread, a mob of villagers armed with bamboo sticks and spears chased the animal and killed it.
The injured woman is now undergoing treatment in the community health centre of Rajnagar. Divisional forest officer (DFO) of Bhitarkanika Bikash Ranjan Dash said the wild boar strayed into the village from the nearby mangrove forest. The injured person will be provided compensation after enquiry.
“However, it is illegal on the part of villagers to kill the boar as it is a protected animal under Wildlife Protection Act, 1972. The animal’s carcass has been sent to the local veterinary hospital for autopsy and we are investigating the case,” the DFO added.
Manoj Behera, a villager, said wild boars are being spotted in many villages during this harvesting season. The animals cause damage to farmland and forest officials are unable to control them. They are digging for grubs, tubers and roots to eat and in the process, overturning the ground. If regulatory steps are not put in place, the boar population could soon go out of control, he said.
Local environmentalist Sudhansu Parida said the mangrove forest near Balapala village is home to the largest population of wild boars in the district. The boars are strained by dwindling forest cover and often wander into paddy fields and villages for food. These animals are mostly tempted by paddy and vegetable crops as well as dry fish.