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Chhattisgarh News
Tusker tramples 50-year-old man to death in Chhattisgarh

RAIPUR: A 50-year-old man was trampled to death in a tusker attack at Bagicha block of tribal Jashpur district on Wednesday night.

The incident took place when Khaud Ram was walking back home with his wife and another relative at night. Suddenly Khaud's wife felt the presence of an elephant around and they spotted the tusker just behind them.

While the two women ran for life, the elephant picked Khaud up with its trunk and threw him on the ground and trampling him. Later in the morning, forest department recovered his mutilated body from the spot.

Officials said nearly half a dozen deaths have taken place in last three months in the district due to tusker attacks. Bagicha, Kunkuri and Farsabahar are the blocks majorly affected with movement and attacks of tusker.

Though forest department has been trying to spread awareness for safety and prevention of human-animal conflict, locals mainly depend on forest produce for their livelihood, compelling them to venture into forests.

Frequent attacks on crops, houses and lives have caused aggression among locals who have now threatened massive protests across the district against state government. In the past also, local villagers had cordoned off the area to block traffic and protested in front of forest ranger's residence.

With more than 500 houses damaged by elephants, nearly 200 villages in Jashpur district are badly affected and people are forced to sleep on trees or take shelter on rooftops of school buildings.

The district has nearly 150 elephants on the move throughout the year. Forest officials said that hulla party, chilli burning, drum beating, bursting crackers are all temporary solutions and there's no other alternative.

A senior officer said that few mobile vans have been deployed for immediate assistance in case of attack or emergency. He said that this year the region is even more affected because elephant calves frequent into human habitat, causing major damage.

Helpline numbers 0758701511, 075870158800 have been circulated for people's assistance, but the remote and interior areas hardly have mobile networks which becomes another hurdle for villagers to seek help.