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A 55-year-old man was trampled to death by a wild elephant at Chavadiyur near Sholayur in Attappady on Saturday night, triggering large-scale public protest against the Forest Department.
The incident occurred around 7.30 p.m. The deceased was identified as Maruthachala Gowder, who runs a chicken stall in the locality. Gowder was attacked by the tusker when he was returning home after the day’s business.
The animal later damaged crops and several houses in the area. It retreated to the jungles after locals and the elephant squad scared it away.
On Sunday morning, hundreds of local residents laid siege to the Forest Office at Sholayur demanding security for their lives and properties. People allowed autopsy to be conducted on Gowder after senior forest officials intervened.
Meanwhile, officials said seven new elephant squads would be deputed to Attappady, and that one among them would camp permanently at Chavadiyur.
Electric fencing will be strengthened and elephant proof trenches made.