No plans to carve out jumbo corridors: Minister

No plans to carve out jumbo corridors: Minister

Forest Minister Ramanath Rai on Wednesday stated that the State government has no plans of carving out new elephant corridor but has, nonetheless, allocated Rs 109.37 crore to a comprehensive project aimed at reducing man-animal conflict. 

The project has been envisaged for 15 districts which have seen heightened elephant activity.
These districts are: Bangalore Urban, Bangalore Rural, Ramanagara, Mysore, Hassan, Chamrajnagar, Madikeri, Chikmagalur, Mandya, Tumkur, Uttar Kannada, Dakshina Kannada, Belgaum, Dharwad and Shimoga, he said in a written statement to questions in the Legislative Council. 
Rai said that as many as eight elephants have died in the past four months due to unhygienic water and non-availability of safe drinking water in the tanks in the Bandipur forest area. Result: There has been an increase in the number of elephants straying outside the forest region and entering the towns and villages in the vicinity.

The department is making an all-out effort to provide safe drinking water in the forest region by giving prominence to build check dams, tanks and also channels to divert clean water into the forest region, the minister said.
He said that the department is posting an IFS officer for the specific purpose of reducing man-elephant conflict in the State.

In Nagarhole forest, it is impossible to completely surround the core region with trenches due to rocky land surface on one side, with Waynad and Bandipur forest area abutting the other two sides, Rai said. The fourth side of the Nagarhole forest region adjoins Virajpet town.

Rai, in his reply, said of the 205-km boundary line of the Nagarahole forest range, trenches have been dug around 150.40 km and work on another 54.60 km is pending. During rainy season, soil settles in these trenches, providing a pathway to elephants to venture out of the forest area.

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