Forest Department Driver in Maharashtra Tragically Crushed by Herd of Wild Elephants While Filming by the Roadside
The entry of wild elephants into the Palasgaon forest area of Armori in Gadchiroli, Maharashtra, had deeply perturbed local villagers. In response, they promptly alerted the area’s forest department about the situation. Subsequently, forest department personnel, accompanied by local residents, initiated efforts to disperse the elephants. Unfortunately, during these efforts, a herd of elephants attacked a forest department driver, resulting in his tragic demise.
The continuous influx of wild elephants into the Palasgaon forest had posed significant challenges for the residents of the area. Distressed by the situation, the villagers sought assistance from the local forest authorities. Upon receiving the notification, forest department personnel, in collaboration with the villagers, endeavored to steer the wild elephants away. However, when they attempted to deter the elephants, the animals began running in various directions. At that moment, the forest department driver had parked his vehicle on the side of the road and was recording a video from the front. Suddenly, some of the wild elephants charged towards him. Although others managed to escape upon seeing the approaching elephants, the driver fell and was fatally injured, succumbing on the spot.
Following this unfortunate incident, news of the tragedy spread rapidly. Forest officials swiftly responded to the situation, summoning senior forest authorities to the scene. After conducting a thorough Panchnama (inspection) of the incident site, the victim’s body was secured and transferred to the Upazila Hospital Valsa.
Under the guidance of Chief Conservator of Forest Ramesh Kumar, Deputy Conservator of Forest Salvitthal, Assistant Conservator of Forest Manoj Chavan, and other forest officials will conduct further investigations into the matter.
The victim’s body has been sent for a post-mortem examination, with top officials overseeing the investigation.
Over the past three years, wild elephants from Odisha have been encroaching into Maharashtra districts, causing significant losses to local farmers. Earlier this year, a man lost his life in an attack by a wild elephant.
Farmers in Gadchiroli, Chandrapur, and Gondia have been deeply concerned as these wild elephants have been damaging their crops for the past three years. Just two months ago, a similar incident occurred, resulting in the unfortunate death of an elderly individual and injuries to several others. Consequently, farmers have been urging the forest department to take measures to relocate the wild elephants and mitigate the damage to their crops.