7 Elephants Electrocuted In Odisha: Govt &Opposition Indulge In Blame Game

ANIMAL lovers across India are shocked to hear that as many as seven elephants were electrocuted after coming in contact with a live wire in Odisha’s Dhenkanal district on Saturday. Forest officials confirmed that 13 jumbos were together passing through an area in the Sadar Forest Range when seven of them came in contact with an 11-KV power line causing the tragedy. State’s Forest Minister Bijayshree Routray said an investigation into the incident is underway and necessary action would be taken against the guilty. Energy Secretary Hemant Kumar Sharma said a three-member team, including the electrical inspector, is probing the incident and on the basis of their report, appropriate action would be taken. Locals informed the officials about the mishap. The incident happened prima facie because of sagging electric wire, the forest official said. Three

AS many as seven elephants were electrocuted in Odisha’s Dhenkanal district on Saturday. Confirming the tragedy forest officials said three carcasses were lying on a road and another four were detected from a canal. The incident took place when the herd was moving towards a canal road from a paddy field. The Forest department has asked the Energy department to ensure that the electric wire was at a height of 17-18 feet above the ground. Blaming the power authorities for the tragedy, Forest Minister of Odisha Bijayshree Routray said the Central Electricity Supply Utility (CESU) was cautioned in this regard long ago. On-rectification of sagging lines and non-cabling of transmission lines led to the tragedy, Routray and Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (Wildlife) Sandeep Tripathi said. Action would be taken. The line acted as a temporary feeder for a railway construction site in the area where the incident took place, he said, adding that meetings between the Forest and the Energy departments are being held on a regular basis to ensure proper coordination. The incident drew sharp criticism from the opposition parties with both the Congress and the BJP accusing the state government of “utter negligence”. Senior BJP leader Rudra Narayan Pani hit lashed out at the state government and said both the Energy and Forest departments were “responsible” for the tragedy. Environmentalist and wildlife expert Biswajit Mohanty said there are 200 places in Dhenkanal district where high voltage electric wires are sagging at a low height and left unattended.(inputs fromThePioneer)

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