Arka Champramari, a resident of West Bengal’s Alipurduar, was faced with an elephantine challenge on Saturday evening when two tuskers attacked her brother. But Arka bucked down and with sheer courage and presence of mind, fended off the jumbos.
Her brother, Bijoy Champramari, a teacher by profession, had gone to Arka’s house in Satli village located in the Kalchini block near the Jaldapara National Park. After setting out from his sister’s house, Bijoy found himself in a life-threatening situation when he was faced with two tuskers on the adjoining road.
As Bijoy froze in fear, one of the angry jumbos charged at him. Grabbing him, along with his bicycle, with its tusk, it flung him away on the roadside. As her battered and bruised brother laid helplessly, the noise caught Arka's attention, and fearing the worst, she rushed out from her home and reached the spot in the nick of time.
"I was determined to save my brother’s life. Even if I had to die in the process," said Arka.
At that time, there was no one else in the vicinity apart from Arka and her injured brother facing the angry jumbos. So Arka used whatever she could get her hands on. "I took a handful of sand and dust from the road and flung it towards the tuskers, aiming for their eyes," said Arka.
Her desperate effort worked. The sand temporarily blinded the two elephants. In the meantime, Arka started shouting for help at the top of her voice. Other villagers rushed to the spot, trying to chase away the elephants. With sand in their eyes, the two jumbos retreated into the nearby forest.
Bijoy was admitted to a district hospital with severe injuries to his neck and waist.