Man-elephant conflict takes serious turn in Golaghat (India)


The Sentinel

Date Published

With over 72 people and 48 elephants killed and several houses damaged during the last ten years, the human-elephant conflict has taken a serious turn in Golaghat district.

Sources said massive deforestation has led to the man-elephant conflict in the district.

Sources said herds of wild elephants coming out from Nambor Reserve Forest Reserve, Numaligarh Deopahar, Kaziranga National Park and its adjoining areas; including some parts of Numaligarh have created havoc in the district.

The villagers of Rong Bong, Bokial, Ponka, Rajabari, Leteku, Fallangoni, Jeckson grant, Morangi and Khumtai areas in Golaghat district have been spending sleepless nights in fear of the wild jumbos.

Golaghat Forest Division sources stated that 72 people killed and 2377 bighas of crops and property were damaged by wild elephants. On the other hand, as many as 48 elephant found dead during the last ten years as a result of man-elephant conflict.  As many as 10 people and three elephants were killed and crop and property of 48 families were damage during the year 2005.  Two elephant, 10 people and 231 families’ crops and property damaged in 2006 while in the year 2007 four elephant, 11 people and 318 families affected, in the year 2008 two elephant, seven people and 100 families, in the year 2009 three elephant, eight  people and 243  families, in the year 2010 ten elephant, eight people and 236 families, in the year 2011 nine elephant, three people and 334 families, in the year 2012  six elephant, 8 people and 310 families, in the year 2013 two elephant, 3 people and 273 families, in the year 2014 five elephant, 3 people and 278 families and in the year 2015 two elephant and one person were killed in due to man-elephant conflict. More than 150 people were injured during last ten years in the Golaghat district in wild elephant attack.

Youth leader and Golaghat district Schedule Caste Student Union’s president Dipankar Das said massive deforestation has led to the man-elephant conflict in the district. Due to massive tree felling, the Nambor Forest Reserve, Numaligarh Deopahar Proposed Reserve forest are on the verge of extinction.

Journalist Ritupallab Saikia said the continuous destruction of forests is leading to a conflict between man and wild animals. “In most cases, the animals intrude into human habitation in search of food. Even in the urban areas, leopard, deer entering into houses has increased. The main reason behind this is the continuous destruction of forest and non-availability of food and water in the forest.

There are allegations raised that the Deopahar of Numaligarh and Nambor Reserve under Golaghat district which are considered to be major habitats for wildlife including the wild elephants, are being encroachment of its forest land due to which herd of wild elephants sneak into village areas and creating mayhem among the people.