Suffering of elephants due to rapid urbanization and encroachment of their corridors is one of the burning biodiversity issues in Assam. In an extremely unfortunate accident on Wednesday, a female elephant and her calf fell into a pit at the Patanjali Foods and Herbal Park currently under construction at Tezpur.
The pit was dug for construction of a multi-storey building. However, one other elephant which also fell into the pit rescued itself. Forest officials rushed to the spot and immediately deployed a JCB machine to dig a parallel slope from surface to bottom of the pit. Rescue operations were on till the filing of this report. However, irate locales alleged that the Park was constructed in an elephant corridor.
Rescue operation going on
The male elephant managed to come out while the calf was rescued by forest employees and translocated to Kaziranga National Park after being provided treatment, Sonitpur West Divisional Forest Officer Diganta Barooah said.The mother elephant is still stuck in the pit with veterinarians attending to it.
‘The vets suspect that one of the rear legs of the elephant may be fractured and her condition is being closely monitored,’ Barooah said.
The forest department has made adequate arrangement for continuing treatment during the night by installing flood light and providing other facilities, he added. ’Our people along with the forest department personnel regularly guard the site against elephant depredation during the night and the herd was not there for the last couple of days but suddenly appeared near the site this morning,’ Park Coordinator and spokesman Uday Goswami said.
Patanjali was also providing all logistic support as requested by the forest department to shift the female elephant, Goswami added.