Solar fences keep out jumbos (Kasaragod District, India)


The Hindu

Date Published
Forest Department is erecting 7-km-long solar fence in Kasaragod

Having almost completed laying the 2.20 metre tall Elephant Proof Wall (EPW) in roughly 4-km-long stretch in areas prone to wild beasts intrusion in parts of the district, the Forest Department here is on the course of erecting 7-km-long solar-fence in select localities bordering Karnataka forests.

The Department has been sanctioned around Rs. 10 lakh to erect the fences at Palavayal near the eastern hilly pocket of Chittarikkal and Karadukka panchayat and efforts were under way to float tender for the works, Forest Divisional Officer here, M. Rajeevan, said on Monday.

The new project envisages erection of solar fence wires to check intrusion of small and big wild animals intruding from forest areas in Karnataka and the works are expected to be executed in another six months.

There have been recurring instances of wild animals intruding into private farms in search of water and fodder resulting in destruction of standing crops such as areca gardens, plantains and coconut groves.

Meanwhile, the Forest Department is busy giving finishing touches to the 4-km long 2.20-metre high EPW projects, executed by the Police Housing and Construction Corporation Ltd, at an estimated cost of Rs. 6 crore primarily to ward off wild elephant intrusion in the area. 

The EPW works — one-and-a-half-km long stretch from Thalappachery to Odiyanadkka in Delampadi panchayat, a 2 km wall at Maruthom and other 500 metre wall at Kottanchery falling under the Vellarikundu Forest range — are expected to be completed in another two weeks, Mr. Rajeevan said.

The district needed EPW along a 20 km stretch to fully ward off the menace, he said adding that funds crunch continued to pose hurdle in executing such projects.