Madi protesters urge safety from wild animals

- RAMESH KUMAR PAUDEL, SHANKAR ACHARYA, CHITWAN/PARSA

Dec 2, 2018-

Residents of Madi in Chitwan district disrupted vehicular traffic on the Bharatpur-Madi-Thori road for two days protesting the deaths of two women attacked by an elephant on Wednesday. The protestors have demanded the authorities to control wild animals from the Chitwan National Park (CNP) that frequently enter the human settlements and attack humans, kill domesticated animals and destroy houses and crops.

On Wednesday, Sushila Bhandari and Trishnakali Paudel of Madi Municipality-9 were killed in a tusker attack. The bereaved families received the bodies on Friday after the authorities concerned assured them of providing compensation and taking initiatives to control the wild animals.

With this, the number of tusker attack deaths in Madi and Thori within the past six months reaches six.

To control the problem, locals have demanded that the government either install electric fencing and erect concrete walls or relocate the settlements to safer areas.

“The attacks have to end now. The government must take initiatives to solve our problem or we will have to launch more protests,” said Shiva Hari Subedi, ward chairman of Madi Municipality-9.

“Madi Municipality plans to construct concrete walls to prevent wild animals from entering the human settlements, but it does not have enough budget. We will ask the central government to fund the construction.”

After the incident on Wednesday, a group of technicians from the CNP and Parsa National Park (PNP) have been mobilised in Madi area to observe the tuskers’ movement and control them if needed.

The conservationists prepare to dart the tuskers and install radio collars to track their movement.

Assistant Conservation Officer at the PNP Ashok Kumar Ram said they spotted some elephants in Madi on Friday and Saturday but the technicians could not dart the pachyderms.

“It would be a huge achievement if we can dart the elephants and install radio collars. We could track their movements and alert the locals on time in case of encroachment,” said Ram.

Published: 02-12-2018 07:13

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