From our Correspondent
DIGBOI, March 11: Despite stringent laws governing the protection of wildlife across the country and Assam in particular, reports of merciless killing and other forms of cruelty on wildlife have been on the rise in several places of Tinsukia district.
According to fresh reports, a 13-year old wild elephant was found dead in Kotha Reserve Forest under Jagun Range of Digboi Division on Wednesday morning by villagers. The innocent creature was allegedly killed mercilessly using venomous arrows that injured the left shoulder of the elephant.
According to Madhav Dahal, the Ranger concerned, who initiated the postmortem proceedings after lodging the FIR at Jagun police station, the elephant died due to the poisonous arrows. He, however, added that the creature was not a tusker and as such it was not the act of poaching rather might be a result of man-elephant conflict where the villagers might have resorted to killing the elephant for their protection.
Meanwhile, talking to The Sentinel, the former DFO Digboi Division Siraj-uddin Ahmed together with M Tungum, the conservator of Forest Jorhat who is at present in Digboi, repudiated the news regarding the recovery of four decomposed elephants in Lakhipather Reserve Forest under Lakhipather Range. According to them, based on the news, a team comprising security forces, forest personnel and media persons cordoned the said locations in the presence of local villageman Yub Lal Sharma but neither any foul smell was found nor any sign of dead elephants was seen.
“It was a twisted news and using old photographs taken three months ago of a similar incident at Lakhipather, an effort was made to distort the image of the division which is without any DFO at present,” said Tungum.
However, it may be added that a strong network of smugglers and poachers have been actively involved in destroying wildlife resources and trading them for easy money taking advantage of the inefficient forest administration without any head to steer the Digboi Division.