Villagers demand compensation for tusker attacks in Jharkhand

Bundu (Jharkhand), May 7: Inhabitants in Jharkhand’s Bundu village staged protests over a demand for compensation after wild elephants killed two people, injured a dozen others and damaged their homes on Monday.

Hundreds of protesters blocked the highway on Tuesday and demanded the immediate removal of the tuskers from the area.

The forest range officer has reportedly given a compensation of Rs.50, 000 to the family of those killed by the elephants.

Villagers have been told that a special team will be set up to remove the elephants.

Among the other demands are grant of a pension and education for children in a good school, and a house in Indira Vishwas.

Local residents said this was not an isolated incident, as they are regularly attacked by elephants, especially during the paddy season.

As their forest habitat is being felled by a growing population in need of more land for homes and farms, India’s remaining elephant population and its people are coming into conflict, causing a jumbo-sized headache for rural officials and wildlife activists.

Home to 50,000 wild Asian elephants a century ago, just 26,400 elephants were roaming India’s national parks and forests in 2002. The first comprehensive elephant census published in 2005 showed a steep drop in numbers to just 21,300 elephants. (ANI)