Wild tuskers claim 39 lives in 10 years

Jhapa, October 4

In the past 10 years, as many as 36 persons have lost their lives to elephant attacks in Jhapa.

According to details provided by the Division Forest Office of Jhapa, nine people died in elephant attacks in the district in the fiscal of 2011-12, which was followed by eight and three persons in fiscal 2012-13 and 2013-14.

Elephant attack claimed one life in fiscal 2014-15, four lives in 2015-16, seven lives in 2016-17, three lives in 2017-18 and one in 2018-19.

“According to locals number of casualties from elephant attacks is 39, officially it’s 36 only as we started keeping record only after 2010-11,” said District Forest Officer Devendra Upreti.

The forest authorities have distributed some 10.137 million rupees in relief to as many as 561 elephant victims in the district until the end of last fiscal.

“The victims were provided with relief on the basis of the damage caused to them. While the families that lost their members in elephant-attack were provided with one million rupees in relief, those with seriously injured members were provided Rs 200,000. Normally injured got up to 20,000 rupees,” said Division Forest Office Jhapa Chief Bishnulal Ghimire, adding that the families whose houses or sheds and crops were destroyed got up to 10,000 rupees in relief.

Jhapa’s Bhadrapur, Kachanakawal, Birtamod and Mechi municipalities and Haldibari Rural Municipality are worst affected by wild elephants. According to Ghimire, work to construct solar fencing in the area bordering Jalthal forest was underway at the cost of Rs 60 million.