Dharmendra Pradhan seeks Centre’s intervention in elephant-human conflict in Odisha

Bhubaneswar: Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has written to Union Forest Minister Bhupender Yadav seeking the intervention of the Central Government in the elephant-human conflict in Odisha.

Pradhan urged Yadav to take immediate action in addressing the issue.

“I am writing to you with deep concern about the escalating number of elephant deaths, and straining elephant-human conflict in the state of Odisha. Over the past decade, Odisha has witnessed the loss of 784 elephants, with 245 of these deaths occurring in the last three years alone. The month of March this year has been particularly devastating, with seven elephant deaths being reported-the highest in the past three years. Sadly, most of the deaths are due to poaching, electrocution or train/ road accidents,” Pradhan mentioned in the letter.

“Recently, it was also noted in the State Legislative Assembly that a total 2776 wild animals have been killed in the past 5 years (2017-18 to 2021-22) in Odisha, including 416 elephants. It is also worth mentioning that 669 people and 741 domestic animals died, and 9151 houses were damaged due to elephant attacks,” he said in the letter.

“Elephant conservation is of paramount importance to Odisha, as these majestic animals are an integral part of our ecological balance, cultural heritage, and the state’s identity. The well-being of these creatures is essential for maintaining the health of our forests and the livelihood of local communities that rely on them,” he said.

“Considering the critical situation in Odisha, we believe that the Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change’s intervention is vital. I request you to take immediate action in addressing this pressing issue to ensure the harmonious coexistence of humans and elephants in Odisha. I look forward to your prompt intervention in this matter,” he urged.

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