Trekker trampled to death by wild elephant in Coimbatore

A 40-year-old woman, who allegedly went trekking along with her husband and friends into a reserve forest near Periyanaickenpalayam in Coimbatore without the permission of the Forest Department, was trampled to death by a wild elephant on Sunday.

While P. Bhuwaneshwari, a resident of Ganapathy Managar in Coimbatore, was killed, the others managed to escape.

An official of the Forest Department said the group went into the area under the Tholampalayam east beat of the Periyanaickenpalayam forest range. The group reportedly planned to trek from Palamalai downhill to a tribal settlement at Manguzhi. 

They parked their vehicles on the roadside at Palamalai and trekked to the Ranganathar temple, a hill shrine, through the forest, avoiding the designated road route. 

The group then descended the hill and walked towards the Manguzhi tribal settlement.

Around 7.30 a.m., they encountered a tusker, which trampled the woman. The group had trekked nearly five km before they came face to face with the elephant, the official added.

Regular patrolling

According to District Forest Officer D. Venkatesh, “The group ventured into the forest illegally ignoring the risks involved in such activities. We conduct regular patrol to prevent people from halting vehicles, getting outside or taking photographs in forest areas of main roads like the Coimbatore–Anaikatti road and the Coimbatore-Udhagamandalam road,” he said, pointing that when the incident happened vehicle movement on the road was minimal.

S. Surresh, Forest Range Officer Periyanaickenpalayam range, said Forest Department staff patrols the road to the hill shrine only during festivals.

The body of the woman was autopsied at Coimbatore Medical College Hospital. She was working in the administrative section of a private hospital in Coimbatore.

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Printable version | Feb 22, 2020 1:50:16 AM |

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