Thursday, February 22, 2024

Human-elephant conflict on the rise in Assam

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Guwahati: The death of a female elephant undergoing treatment for paralysis in Assam’s Karbi Anglong district Wednesday has again brought to light the human-elephant conflict in the region.

“Conflict is a fact of life in areas where people and elephants coexist, especially due to agriculture,” said Abhijit Rabha, chief conservator of forests in the Karbi Anglong Autonomous Council.

Karbi Anglong, around 300 km from here, is the largest autonomous district in the northeastern state of Assam.

“If we don’t have contiguous forests, elephants will suffer. If we want elephants to survive, we must keep our forests intact and develop contiguous forest habitats to reduce conflict and promote peaceful coexistence,” he said. Between 1999 and 2009, at least 23 people have lost their lives due to human-elephant conflicts in the Silonijan divisional forest range alone in the district. Likewise, 120 such conflicts were reported between 2007 and 2009 here.

Retaliatory attacks on elephants are also often reported, WTI officials said. (IANS)

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