Elephant Herd Strays Into Dehradun, Triggers Panic (State of Uttarakhand, India)


Press Trust of India

Date Published

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DEHRADUN:  A family of three elephants strayed into the Ladpur residential area of Dehradun early today, triggering fear among locals, officials and residents said.

The elephants, however, did not hurt any passersby and fled into the surrounding forests after forest department officials fired in the air and set off firecrackers to scare them away, Dehradun District Forest Officer Prasanna Kumar Patro said.

“The elephants are still in the forests near the city and we are trying to chase them away to Rajaji National Park,” he said.

The herd comprised a family of three elephants including a male, a female elephant and their calf, Mr Patro said, adding the family was recently spotted roaming around in the Nakraunda area.

With construction work on the Dehradun-Haridwar National Highway picking up momentum, the elephants seem to have lost their way to Rajaji National Park and strayed into residential areas, Mr Patro said.

Witnesses said the elephants had initially strayed into the Badrish colony adjacent to Dalanwala. “We woke up to the sounds of firecrackers and gunshots this morning. As we looked out we saw three elephants running into the forests,” Badrish colony resident Rajesh Painuli said.

It is the first time that elephants entered so deep into the city.