Set up task force to resolve human-animal conflict: SC

Set up task force to resolve human-animal conflict: SC

A herd of elephants cross Mahanadi river near Naraj, in Cuttack, on October 15, 2018. The elephants were rescued by forest department officials after they were caught in the river current. PTI

The Supreme Court on Monday asked the Centre to resolve the 'human-animal conflict', especially involving elephants, by setting up a task force to ensure no violence was caused to the tusker.

A bench of justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta told Additional Solicitor General A N S Nadkarni to consider the idea so that remedial and corrective steps can be taken and elephants in different parts of the country are not subjected to violence.

"There are problems related to elephants, rhinos, lions, tigers. Either you can have some kind of a multi-purpose body or have specific bodies to deal with them," the bench said.

The court said a plea made by environmental activist Prerna Singh Bindra for formulation of a task force and measures to deal with human and elephant conflict was not "something impossible" and it was rather for benefit of the country.

The bench said that 'Project Elephant', which was launched in 1992 by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) to provide support to the states for protection of elephants and their habitats, might have been good but the issue was of its implementation.

Nadkarni said he would get back on the subject. He also pointed out that the Centre has conducted inspections in some states, including Karnataka, where spikes and fireballs were used to drive away elephants.