Man injured in jumbo attack

Albert Francis, a resident of Thuramukh in Golaghat district of Upper Assam is fighting for life at Golaghat Civil hospital after he was critically injured by a herd of wild elephants on Sunday night.

By SANJOY HAZARIKA in Bokakhat
  • Published 12.09.18
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Houses destroyed by wild elephants at Ambikapur, Pegari, in Digboi on Monday night. Picture by UB Photos

Bokakhat: Albert Francis, a resident of Thuramukh in Golaghat district of Upper Assam is fighting for life at Golaghat Civil hospital after he was critically injured by a herd of wild elephants on Sunday night.

Albert, who was returning home with friends, came face to face with a herd of elephants coming out from Nambor-Doigrung Wildlife Sanctuary (NDWS) in Golaghat district of Upper Assam when the herd attacked them.

Though others could escape, Albert could not.

The alarming increase of man-elephant conflict at NDWS has become a serious concern.

Largescale deforestation has decreased the forest area in the region.

Initially, a total of 17,000 hectares of jungle was in the sanctuary but now it is limited to about 8,000 hectares.

As a result, wild elephants have to come out from the jungle in search of food resulting in man-elephant conflict.

The stray elephants are so ferocious that they can attack any person facing them. According to sources, a total of 106 people and 94 elephants died in Golaghat district in the past 16 years.

Dillenia indica ( Oui tenga in Assamese), a citrus fruit, which is the favourite food of wild elephants was available in the reserve forest but now the number of such trees is becoming fewer along with other trees that elephants depend on.

The forest department, however, is indifferent towards planting these trees.

The Nambor-Doigrung wildlife sanctuary covers an area of 97.15 square km and is located 25km from Golaghat town and about 318km from Guwahati LGBI Airport.

The area was declared as a wildlife sanctuary in 2003. The sanctuary along with Garampani wildlife sanctuary (6 square km) and Nambor wildlife sanctuary (37 square km) are a part of the Kaziranga-Karbi Anglong elephant reserve, which was declared on April 17, 2003, with an estimated area of 3,270 square km.

The floras found in the sanctuary are bhelu, gomari, ajar, nahor, udiyam, poma, bon som among others along with some rare species of orchids and the faunas include elephants, hoolock gibbons, stumped-tailed macaques, pig-tailed macaques, slow loris, Assamese macaque, rhesus macaque, tiger, leopard, fishing cat, barking deer, sambar, wild pigs, gaur and so on.

The birds found in the sanctuary are white-winged wood duck, great pied hornbill, wreathed hornbill, adjutant stork along with reptiles, tortoise, monitor lizards and pythons.