After two days of flying drones, forest officials on Friday traced the location of a rogue wild elephant inside Rongjuli forest area in Assam’s Goalpara district.
The rogue elephant, which was often referred by the locals as ‘Laden’, has so far killed five people in Goalpara district, triggering panic among the locals along the Assam-Meghalaya border.
Wildlife lovers and conservators are, however, against using the name of ‘Laden’ for the rogue elephant.
“We have traced the location of the rogue elephant today using drones. It is the elephant the villagers were complaining about.
“We are going to observe it from close quarters using domesticated elephants before taking a decision to tranquilizing it,” said chief conservator of forest Akashdeep Baruah.
Baruah said the male elephant is under mush at present, which has led to aggressiveness in it.
“Experts are working out on a plan to shift the elephant,” he said.
“This is for the first time in Assam a drone has been successfully used for locating a problematic animal inside a forest area.
“As per the instructions of the forest & environment minsiter Parimal Suklabaidya, a team of officials led by Akash Deep Baruah, CCF, Lower Assam Zone have successfully traced the elephant in Rangjuli,” said minister’s spokesman Sailendra Pandey.
“Divisional forest officer Cachar division Sunny Deo Choudhury, who has expertise in flying the drones, has flown it, which captured images of the elephant,” Pandey said.
“The use of drone not only increases the chances of detection of an animal from the air but also significantly reduces the danger of following an aggressive animal on foot,” he said.
The Goalpara district has drawn attention in the past due to high number of incidents of human-elephant conflicts.