Elephant corridors: is the govt helpless, asks SC 

With several states not responding to its order on creating elephant corridors to check animal deaths and curb human-animal conflict, the Supreme Court on Thursday said it was a "hopeless" situation and asked the Centre whether it felt "helpless".

A bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta was informed by the Centre that there were 27 “critical” elephant corridors falling in 22 states, but despite the top court's directions, 13 of these states have not responded to the government on the matter.

“What is to be done? No state is listening to Government of India. Yesterday, we had the same problem, today we have the same problem. It is hopeless. There has to be a solution of this. Is the Government of India helpless,” the bench asked Additional Solicitor General (ASG) A N S Nadkarni, who appeared for the Centre.

“Nobody listens to the Government of India,” the bench said.

Nadkarni, while referring to the apex court's April 23 order directing 19 states to file their responses within four weeks, said “this time also to the Supreme Court. The order was of the Supreme Court”.

When the ASG said that the states were showing scant regard to the Union of India and the Supreme Court also, the bench said, "also to the Constitution of India".

"It is a crisis. If state governments will say we will do whatever we want and let the Government of India say anything, there will be a complete breakup of the system. It is an amazing situation," the bench, which was hearing a batch of pleas which have raised the issue of having elephant corridors across India, said.

At the outset, Nadkarni referred to the April 23 order of the apex court and said that out of the 22 states, three states — Kerala, Meghalaya and West Bengal — had responded earlier while five others have also given their responses to the Centre.

He said there were incidents of elephant deaths in rail or road accidents or by electrocution.

The counsel appearing for Nagaland said they have also given their response to the Centre on the issue.

The bench noted in its order that 13 states, including Uttarakhand, Odisha, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab and Rajasthan have not responded to the Centre on the issue of elephant corridors.

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Elephant corridors: is the govt helpless, asks SC 

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