Bengal villagers protest against jumbo menace

Residents of West Bengal’s Jhargram district staged a protest on Wednesday against the destruction of crops and damage to houses caused by wild elephants in the area. Hundreds of villagers blocked roads and disrupted traffic in Sankrail area of the district alleging that forest officials were not doing enough to drive the elephants away. Basav Raj, Divisional Forest Officer, Jhargram, said a herd of over 70 elephants, including a good number of calves, is living in the Lalgarh forest of the district. Admitting that people have complained about the movement of the elephants, the DFO said that trampling of crops is a regular phenomenon in the region with both humans and elephants competing for resources. “The forest department compensates villagers for loss of crops due to elephant movement,” he said. Over the past several years, forests of south Bengal have recorded highest cases of human-elephant conflict in the country. Earlier this month, three elephants. including a calf, were run over by a train at Gidhnih in Jhargram. Forest officials said that the accident occurred because there was no history of elephant movement in that particular stretch of forest.

Source : https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/bengal-villagers-protest-against-jumbo-menace/article24756366.ece

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