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    A bit of tragedy! In Assam, 18 elephants killed in lightning strike in Nagaon. Environment and Forests Minister orders inquiry

    Published on May 15, 2021

     by Hareswar Bora

    NAGAON (Assam) : In a heart wrenching incident, At least 18 wild elephants were died from electrocution caused by lightning and thunderbolt at Topotjuri area, a remote forest near Bamuni Pahar under Kathiatoli forest range on Wednesday night. Some locals who went to collect firewood saw the carcasses of those elephants on Thursday morning and intimated it immediately to the local forest personnel.

    Following the heart wrenching elephants’ death incident at Topotjuri forest area near Bamuni Pahar under Kathiatoli forest range on Wednesday night, state forest minister Parimal Suklaboidya, local MLA of Barhampur LAC Jitu Goswami accompanied by PCCF, principal secretary, Environment and Forest, a team of veterinarians as well as other wildlife specialists rushed to the site of the incident at Topotjuri forest area this morning and assessed on-the-spot scenarios.

    After preliminary investigation with the top officials from state forest department, the minister, Suklaboidya however ensured it that the herd of jumbos probably died from electrocution caused by lightning and thunderbolt as no visible signs of struggle before death by the victim jumbos were found or noticed on the spot. So, the exact cause of death of the herd of elephants will come out only after the post mortem report, Suklaboidya added. Speaking to the local media persons here, the minister said that an enquiry committee headed by Deputy Conservator of Forest, KK Deori and other seven member team of veterinarians have been instituted to investigate the entire episode in detail.

    The committee will submit the preliminary investigation report within just three days while the detail report will be entertained within 15 days, he said adding further that the government would construct a mausoleum in memory of the herd of wild jumbos in the site in the days to come. Earlier the minister also paid tribute to the precious asset of the nature. Significantly, various organizations including the nature lovers have not accepted the tragic death of the herd of the wild jumbos at Bamuni Pahar as a mere incident caused by lightning and thunderbolt.

    Rather these organizations claimed that there was a solid conspiracy by some forest mafias behind the tragic episode of Bamuni Pahar. Claiming it as pre planned killing, delegates from Asom Jatiyatabadi Yuva Chatra Parishad, All Assam Students’ Union, Krishak Mukti Sangram Somitee submitted separate memorandums to the forest minister Parimal Suklaboidya and the local MLA Jitu Goswami on the site itself and also appealed to stop the ongoing construction work of Bamuni Grant solar energy project by a private sector company at Bamuni Mikirgaon area. It is pertinent to mention that among those 18 dead wild elephants, forest personnel have ensured 10 male and 8 female.