Wild jumbos destroy coffee estates

Wild jumbos destroy coffee estates

Forest Department continues to neglect problem, say villagers in Napoklu

Wild elephants have caused great loss by destroy the coffee plantations belonging to Cheeyakapoovanda Appacchu at Nelaji village of Ballamavati Gram Panchayat on Saturday.

The herd of wild elephants has been roaming around Chelavara village for the last one month and has, in the recent days, entered Nelaji village.

The villagers, who have been provoked by the negligence of Forest Department officials, vented their ire against the officials on Saturday.

“Although the Department officials have been informed, no measures have been taken to control the wild elephant menace. The Department staff members visit the places after the wild elephants cause harm but nothing is done after that. Driving wild elephants to forest does not help. The Department officials should use tamed elephants to translocation of wild elephants,” the local residents have demanded.

The wild elephant herds are being spotted in Karada, Cheyyandane, Chelavara, Marandoda, Yavakapadi and Naladi villages. As elephant calves are part of the herd, the villagers fear that the elephants might attack people who come in their way. The elephant herd moves on the roads during nights, hence, both pedestrians and vehicles cannot move on the road freely.

If the tourists who visit Chelavara Hills return late, the villagers alert the Forest Department. In a similar incident, after getting information from the villagers, the Forest Department vehicle came to the spot. The villagers expressed their discomfiture on the absence of senior officials at the time. They also warned of conducting a dharna in front of the Forest Department office, if the wild elephant herd is not translocated within a specified time.

“The Forest Department should compensate the growers who have incurred the loss,” urged Zilla Panchayat members Nellachanda Kiran Cariappa.

Mundyolanda Ravi Somanna, Nariyandada Gram Panchayat vice president, and members Beliyandra Rathish Kumar, Kodira Prasanna, Mundyolanda family members and other villagers were present.

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