802 wild animals hunted in Odisha: Environment Minister
Bhubaneswar: As many as 802 wild animals were killed by poachers in Odisha during last five years, informed Forest, Environment and Climate Change minister Bikarm Keshari Arukha in the State Assembly.
Replying to a query, Arukha stated the 802 wild animals including tigers, elephants and endangered species were hunted in different forests of the State. These wild animals were killed from 2016-17 to 2020-21, the minister added.
Besides, Arukha said a total of 3,248 poachers were arrested in the State during the same period.
BJD MLA from Khandapada, Soumya Ranjan Patnaik in an unstarred question wanted to know details on the elephants, tigers and endangered species killed in Odisha in last five years and the number of poachers arrested.
Patnaik also sought district-wise data on forests in the State that have been damaged due to fire in last five years.
The minister informed 42,003 hectares forest have been damaged in the State in 2021 alone.
In another query by Congress MLA from Jatni, Suresh Kumar Routray, the minister said 406 elephants have died in the State from 2016-17 to 2020-21.
Arukha further informed 162 out of the total pachyderm deaths were due to accidents. A total of 14 elephants died after being hit by trains, 54 were electrocuted and four were killed after being hit by vehicles. He added while 90 elephants died due to several other reasons, as many as 11 pachyderms were killed by poachers.