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Two elephants electrocuted in Odisha’s Subarnapur district

Area residents near the carcasses of two female elephants that were electrocuted.

Area residents near the carcasses of two female elephants that were electrocuted.  

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Two elephants were electrocuted in Odisha’s Subarnapur district on Sunday.

The incident took place in Tithipali reserve forest where someone charged solar fencing with electric current. Two female elephants possibly strayed into field, came in contact with it and died.

“About 10-km solar fencing was put up by forest department to stop elephants from entering human habitation as well as fields. The shock of solar power cannot kill an elephant. But it is suspected that the fence was deliberately charged with electric current. Two adult female elephants died,” said Debarchan Behera, Divisional Forest Officer of Subarnapur district.

Mr. Behera said: “We have detained a person in connection with the deaths. During harvesting time, elephants generally come for food. Many people get frustrated when elephants damage ready-to-harvest crop.”

A herd comprising 15 to 16 elephants was tracked near the forest, he said.

With two deaths in Subarnapur district, total eight elephants were killed due to electrocution in last three months.

Since 2009-10, as many as 431 elephants have died in the State. Out of these, 63 have been categorised as electrocution deaths.

This year, 28 deaths have been reported. Eight of them are due to electrocution.

Electrocution deaths occur due to weak power infrastructure in the State. In forest-fringe areas, live electric wires remain sagging at many places. When elephants pass through those areas, they come in contact with the wires.

At some places, especially in Dhenkanal and Angul districts, miscreants lay traps for other wild animals by setting uncovered wire web through which high voltage electricity flows. Elephants get caught in the trap.

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Printable version | Jan 25, 2020 12:14:12 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/two-elephants-electrocuted-in-odishas-subarnapur-district/article7906740.ece

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