Staff Reporter

Minister for Forests holds high-level meet

Official confident of Operation Jumbo’s success

VISAKHAPATNAM: One among the 10-member herd of wild elephants has returned to its sanctuary in neighbouring Orissa.

“We are confident that other members will also be guided by Jayant, the trained male tusker brought from Chittoor to return to their abode,” Conservator of Forests P.V. Padmnabham told The Hindu on Wednesday.

The wild elephants have so far claimed lives of 15 tribals in Gummalakshmipuram, Makkuva and adjoining areas of Vizianagaram and Srikakulam districts with the death of two more near Gummalakshmipuram on Tuesday. Minister for Forests S. Vijayarama Raju held a high-level review meeting with the officials of Orissa and Andhra Pradesh at Parvathipuram on Wednesday.

The elephants which migrated to Andhra Pradesh two months ago are giving sleepless nights to the tribals living in the area and the deployment of Jayant and a team of trackers, mahouts and others along with a good consignment of firecrackers to send the herd back to Orissa has remained unsuccessful as on date.

Forest officials exude confidence that Jayant, which has established ‘good friendship’ with the ‘visitors’ from across the border will guide them to Lekhari sanctuary as part of ‘Operation Jumbo’.