237 People Killed In Elephant Attacks In Odisha In Last Three Years: Minister

Elephant herd moving in Nilagiri in Balasore on Thursday. Photograph: Odishabytes
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Bhubaneswar: Forest and Environment Minister Bijayshree Routray on Wednesday informed the State Assembly that 82 people have been killed in elephant attacks during 2017 till February end this year.

Replying to a question, the minister said the wild jumbos have injured 53 persons, killed 23 domestic animals, damaged 1,119 houses and destroyed crops in nearly 5,401.98 acres of land.

Giving a year-wise break-up of deaths of persons, Routray said while 89 people were killed in 2015-16, 66 died in 2016-17.

Apart from this, the poachers had killed 143 wild animals including 11 elephants, 10 leopards, 1 tiger and 119 deer during the last four years in the state, he added.

To a question on the steps taken by the state government for wildlife protection, the minister said 522 anti-depredation squads and one Wildlife Protection Squad has been formed to keep tabs on the poachers.

He further said the government has formed a state crime cell under the CID of the Crime Branch to nab the poachers. Besides, the Forest officials have been provided with all logistics support to effectively deal with the smuggling and trafficking of wildlife animals and products in coordination with the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB).

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