Elephants driven into forest resurface

Elephants driven into forest resurface

Elephants driven into forest resurface
A herd of eight elephants, which was spotted at Chikkereyur on Sunday and driven into the forest, resurfaced on Monday morning creating panic among the people.

The Forest department heaved a sigh of relief after successfully driving away the elephants on Sunday night. But to their dismay, four of them reappeared on Monday morning, this time at Sathigehundi, a village situated about 30 km from Chikkereyur.

The elephants were camping near Taraka reservoir in the taluk on Monday night. They have damaged two motorbikes and an autorickshaw parked near the reservoir, giving the large crowd gathered there the jitters. However, the forest department officials have promised to drive them away into the forest at night.

ShockedPrakash, son of Marigowda of Sathigehundi, who had come to water his crops at 6 am on Monday, was shocked to find four elephants on his field and informed the forest department officials. The herd is said to have damaged crops, causing a huge loss to farmers.

By 8 am, people from the surrounding villages gathered at the spot and tried to drive the animals away into the forest under the Antharasanthe wildlife range. As the route was new, the elephants ran helter-skelter and sought refuge in a palm grove near the reservoir. Antharasanthe forest officials and staffers began their effort to drive the animals into the forest, but the elephants repeatedly went near the wire fencing and returned.

Crest gatesAt one point, they even ventured near the crest gates, but the huge crowd gathered there was successful in driving them into the palm grove. The operation began at 3 pm again, with the forest staff bursting crackers. The elephants damaged the fence and ran from there to the main road, toppling two motorbikes and an autorickshaw parked there.

According to forest officials, the four elephants had returned to Chikkereyur after midnight and had travelled to Sathigehundi through Hyrige, K Belathuru, Jakkahalli, Lakshmipura, Shiramalli and other villages. The pachyderms were camping in a palm grove and would be driven into the forest by night, they said.

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