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Wild elephant kills villager

Rourkela, Jan. 21: A wild elephant killed a person in Sundergarh this morning.

With today’s incident, the death roll in elephant attacks in the recent weeks has gone up to seven.

Local residents said Anand Singh, a 70-year-old tribal resident of Chikitideri village in the Bisra police station limits, had gone to the field in the morning, suspecting a domestic cattle grazing there. At that time, the jumbo was roaming around the field. Singh could not properly figure out the animal because of the darkness. The jumbo pushed him to the ground and trampled him to death.

Inspector in charge of Bisra police station S. Mallick said he had deputed a team at the spot. Singh’s body would be sent for post-mortem.

The district has been witnessing an invasion of wild elephants for the past one year. A herd has been loitering near the Kuanrmunda forest range for the past two months. Prior to that, another herd had stayed in the same region and made life miserable for the villagers of Kacharu, Nuagaon, Kuanrmunda, Riun. The jumbos had killed one and destroyed property and crops.

On December 25 night, an elephant killed Pramila Ekka and her three-year-old son Rohit at Bihadihi village. On December 29, it struck Jharmunda village, killing William and Phulamoni Ekka. Again on January 3, Kastu Bariah fell prey to the same rogue elephant. The elephant was finally captured tranquillised by a team of officials from Nandankanan zoo. But, it could not recover from the tranquillisation and died.