Chased by forest staff, tusker hits EB line, dies

KRISHNAGIRI: A tusker believed to be 42-years-old died of electrocution when it came into contact with an overhead power line at a private land at Balathotanapalli in Jawalagiri forest range on Wednesday night. The incident happened when forest staffers were trying to chase the elephant from one forest range to another.

Hosur forest division wildlife warden K Karthikeyani told TNIE that the power line was not low but the owner had increase the land height by dumping soil on it. He said the incident happened when forest staff from Denkanikottai and Jawalagiri ranges were driving the tusker from Noganur forest reserve to Panai reserve forest in Jawalagiri.

At Balathotanapalli village, the elephant suddenly strayed into the land owned by Lokesh by damaging the fence. When it tried to exit, the head came into contact with the live wire and it was electrocuted. The carcass was buried at the same land after postmortem.

Tangedco will take action against the land owner Lokesh, the officer said adding that only recently the forest department and Tangedco had rectified sagging lines in seven private lands near Jawalagiri. Regular checks are being conducted by both the departments to fix low-lying lines and other electricity related issues to reduce death of wildlife due to electrocution, Karthikeyani said.

An officer in Tangedco-Denkanikottai said a complaint would be lodged against Lokesh for reducing the height of EB line and posing threat to others.

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