Elephants enter Jajpur, damage crops, houses (Kendrapada)
Times of India
December 9, 2023
Around 12 elephants entered Chingudipala, Gurujanga, Kaliapani, Ostia,
Patana, Kumudibahali, Gokhata, Dhabahali and other villages in Jajpur
district’s Sukinda forest
range and damaged ripe paddy and vegetable crops on Wednesday and Thursday,
in search of food. They damaged houses in eight villages too.
Two persons, Chakara Pradhan, 23, and Barsa Pradhan, 24, of Taladiha were
injured when elephants attacked them on Thursday. Both are undergoing
treatment at the community health centre, Sukinda. Farmers alleged that it
has become a regular affair. “We submitted a memorandum to the forest
department urging them to check wild elephants. But the department has
failed to solve the problem,” alleged Chandramani Mohant of Ostia village.
“It is also difficult for farmers to move alone in the area at night
fearing attacks by elephants. The farmers must be given suitable
compensation for the loss due to elephant menace. The animals have already
destroyed large tracts of paddy. I raised banana over two acres of land.
Elephants damaged many banana crop on Wednesday,” said Jinita Munda, the
former sarpanch of Kaliapani gram panchayat. With vegetables and paddy
ready for harvest in the villages, the people are fearful that the
elephants might cause damage to their crops.
An anti-depredation force has been deployed in areas prone to elephant
attacks. “Some elephants strayed from the nearby forest in Keonjhar
district into the villages and damaged paddy crops and some mud-walled
houses recently. The animals have been roaming in the surrounding villages.
A team of forest staff have been deployed in the villages as a protective
measure there. We are trying to drive the herds out by beating drums and
lighting fires,” said Bipin Bihari Routray, the forest range officer of
Sukinda forest range.