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Three elephants electrocuted in TamilNadu, farm owner arrested

Three female elephants were electrocuted in the Dharmapuri district of Tamil Nadu during the early hours of Tuesday. The elephants, according to forest department officials, were electrocuted after coming in contact with an illegal electric wire in farmland at Marandahalli in the district.

The forest officials came to know of the incident after the villagers informed them. Two calves, who were with the adult elephants, escaped unhurt.

Forest department officials told IANS that a farmer, Muruguan had installed an illegal electric fence to prevent wild boar attacks and the elephants had come in contact with the electric fence while trying to cross the farm. The owner of the farm, Murugan has been arrested by the police.

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Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO) officials were immediately alerted to who disconnected the electric connection. This action, according to forest officials, saved two calves from getting electrocuted.

The three female elephants, according to the forest officials, were aged around 30 years. Forest officials told IANS that the department is trying to reunite the calves which are around nine months with other elephant herds as they will not be able to survive on their own.

K.V.A. Naidu, District Forest Officer told media persons that the forest squad had found three elephants lying on the ground and that they alerted the TANGEDCO authorities who disconnected the electric connection thus preventing the two calves from getting an electric shock.

Local people told that the electricity authorities were not conducting routine inspections as the farmers were restoring to illegal tapping of power lines after 10 p.m. and during morning hours they do not connect with the live line.

The DFO while speaking to media persons said, “Regular drives and punishment by disconnecting their power connections would have been a deterrent. However, as there were no such drives, the farmers were emboldened and the tragedy occurred.”

Animal rights activists also said that the tragic death of three elephants was due to the miserable failure of the state electricity department to prevent farmers from installing illegal electric fences in the elephant path.

R. Madhushankar, an animal rights activist while speaking to IANS said, “The wild elephants were killed, maybe inadvertently, but the farmer and the electricity department of Tamil Nadu must be meted out with stringent punishments. The Tamil Nadu forest department should also have conducted regular checks to prevent such drastic incidents from taking place.”

 

 

 

 

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