Tamil Nadu

Woman killed in elephant attack in Oddanchatram

With the destruction of the elephant corridor in Lower Palani Hills and in Oddanchatram area, conflicts between humans and wild animals, especially elephants, have increased in the district.

On Wednesday, a lone wild elephant fatally attacked a woman, Pappa (40), at Pulikuthukadu on Pachalur Hills near Oddanchatram.

The elephant caught hold of her and threw her away while she was going to a private farm in the early hours.

Local people rushed her to Oddanchatram Government Hospital where doctors advised them to take her to Dindigul GH as her condition was very critical. But she succumbed to her injuries on the way to Dindigul hospital.

According to local people, attacks by wild animals were on the rise in Oddanchatram and Palani blocks. Forest officials said that destruction of elephants’ regular path by local people for farm activities forced the animals to find new paths close to residential areas for food and water.

Herds of elephants had been moving from Kudiraiyaru dam to Oddanchatram through Palar Porundalar dam area. Attacks on humans were rampant at Thekkankottai, Kombaipatti, Sattaparai and Varadhapattinam in Palani block.

With farmers in Kodaiakanal having constructed a small check dam and blocked the flow of water to Varadhamanadhi dam, elephants now had started climbing up to Anjuveedu area near Vilpatti in Kodaikanal Hills for water and feed.

A herd of six elephants and a newborn calf had been camping near a residential area for the past one month.

Farmers could not chase the animals away, they said. The Forest Department deputed a 10-member team to chase the elephant herd into interior forests on Tuesday. It would be difficult to chase the elephants as they were attracted by jackfruits.

They reached the spot when the jackfruit harvesting season was at its peak in Kodaikanal last month. With availability of sumptuous feed and water, they refused to leave Vilpatti area, they added.

Local people say attacks by wild animals are on the rise in Oddanchatram and Palani blocks

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Printable version | Feb 24, 2020 1:55:11 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/woman-killed-in-elephant-attack-in-oddanchatram/article7559564.ece

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