Odisha loses 119 elephants to electrocution in a decade

first_imgOdisha has lost 119 elephants to electrocution alone in past 10 years; the State Assembly was informed on Tuesday.Responding to a written question as to how many elephants died after coming in contact with live electric wire, the State Forest and Environment Minister Bikram Keshari Arukha said. “as many as 119 elephants died in electrocution between 2009-10 and by October of 2019-20.”For these deaths, 133 people, 11 forest personnel and four energy department officials have faced actions, said Mr. Arukha.The Minister listed a number steps being taken to check electrocution deaths of elephants.“Officials of all power distribution companies, Principal Chief Wildlife Warden, Regional Chief Conservator of Forests and Divisional Forest Officers regularly meet in coordination meetings to prevent electrocution deaths,” he said.Energy department has been asked to insulate live electric wire in 1519.36 km-long low tension transmission line in 17 forest divisions of the State and insulation of wire should be made in other areas where elephant movements have been noticed, says the written reply.In Angul forest division, movements of elephants are tracked with the help of drone and a control room has been set up for better coordination between people and field level staff.Wildlife experts, however, said given the magnitude of wildlife loss, the action appeared too insignificant.“The actions being taken against forest and energy department officials are just eye-wash. In most cases, officials are asked explanations and those culminate in suspension. After few months, they are reinstated in job. In absence of visible stringent action, officials do not become sincere to rectify lapses,” said Biswajit Mohanty, wildlife expert.last_img

Leave a Reply