‘Terror elephant’ Chullikomban caught after tranquilizing (India)


P Sudhakaran, Times of India

Date Published

See link for photo of elephant.

KANNUR: Chullikomban, the lone tusker that unleashed terror in Aralam forest region, has been finally caught after tranquilizing. The elephant that killed four people in Aralam alone, was caught after 15 hours of effort on Wednesday, said forest officials.
The forest officials began the task under the leadership of north zone forest conservator Shrawan Kumar Verma in the morning and by noon it was tranquilized by the veterinary surgeon Arun Zacharia. However, three wild elephants guarded it and hence it could not be caught, said officials. Later, around 2.30 pm, once again it was tranquilized using tranquilizer gun and the guarding elephants were driven off using trained elephants.

However, owing to rain, the rogue elephant could not be taken in a vehicle immediately, and it was around 4.30 pm that it was taken in a special vehicle. Later around 10.15 pm it was put in the cage, a temporary training crush, built specially for this purpose with eucalyptus trees.

This elephant is a mystery creature and it had been roaming around in the Aralam locality for quite some time. Normally a lone tusker will always be alone, but this one was different and at times it moved alone. It also mingled with different groups sometimes, they said.

The tusker will be shifted to the elephant shelter and training centre at Kodanad in Ernakulam district. However, since they cannot shift it immediately after tranquilizing, they must keep the rogue elephant here for a few more weeks and hence the cage.