Man dies in elephant attack in O’Valley

July 08, 2022 06:08 pm | Updated 06:08 pm IST - UDHAGAMANDALAM

A 53-year-old man died in an elephant attack in O’Valley forest range in Gudalur on Friday. This is the third such human death resulting from negative human-elephant interaction in the region since May this year.

The victim was identified as Naathan, a resident of Selvapuram in O’Valley. He had traveled by bus to Dharmagiri in O’Valley where he worked on a tea estate which he had leased from another person.

Naathan was reported to be on the way to his tea garden in the morning when he was attacked by a wild elephant. He died on the spot.

The Forest Department has taken a number of steps to mitigate problematic human-elephant interactions in the region, after the deaths of the two persons earlier this year. Kumki elephants have been brought from the Theppakadu elephant camp to drive away elephants that stray close to human habitations, while also communicating with local residents about safe practices they can follow to avoid interactions with elephants.

Local residents staged a protest in Gudalur town following the incident, criticising the Forest Department for what they perceived to be a lack of effort in dealing with the increasing number of negative human-elephant interactions in O’Valley.

Elephant found dead

Meanwhile, a male elephant was found dead near a tea estate in Ellamalai in O’Valley on Friday morning.

Local residents, who noticed the carcass of the elephant notified the Forest Department personnel, who arrived at the scene. They said that a post-mortem would be conducted on the carcass to ascertain the cause of death.

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