A herd of wild elephants have been creating havoc in Odisha's Mayurbhanj and Keonjhar districts causing 20 deaths and damage to several houses and crops in the past few months.
According to villagers, a herd of over 90 elephants is staying in the forest near the border area of both the districts. Sometimes, they come to villages of Mayurbhanj and destroy acres of paddy crops and damage houses at Kenojhar district.
"Villagers of more than 20 to 30 villages are living in fear and panic. Forest department of both districts failed to prevent the heard from entering villages. Villagers have lost their cultivated crops and houses. The government is not responding and more than 20 deaths have been reported in 3 to 4 months," sources said.
Speaking to ANI, Divisional Forest Officer of Keonjhar Santosh Joshi said that they have made small teams to tackle with the herd of elephants.
"Whenever elephants try to move towards any of the villages, our squad put all their efforts to send them away towards the forest. We are also collecting the reports of destruction in order to give compensation to locals," he said.
However, villagers in Mayurbhanj have alleged that they never got any compensation even after they lost their houses and crops.
They added that the administration never assessed their losses. (ANI)