All efforts on to nab Arikomban, says TN CM Stalin

All efforts on to nab Arikomban, says TN CM Stalin

Announces compensation for kin of deceased

Theni/Chennai: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin on Tuesday said the state Forest Department was taking all efforts to nab the rogue wild tusker Arikomban, after it strayed into the state from neighbouring Kerala last week and allegedly attacked a man in Theni who later died.

The Chief Minister also condoled the death of 56-year-old Paulraj, who died on Tuesday, days after being allegedly being attacked by the elephant earlier. Stalin also announced Rs 5 lakh relief to the family of the victim. Known for its love for rice and ration shop raids in Kerala, Arikomban was last month translocated to the Periyar Tiger Reserve there, before it strayed into Cumbum town in Tamil Nadu’s Theni district on May 27.

In a statement in Chennai, Stalin said a team of experienced forest officials has been formed under the field director of Srivilliputhur Megamalai Tiger Reserve (SMTR) to nab the wild tusker. Further, a team of veterinarians and 16 elephant trackers was monitoring the movement of the pachyderm and efforts were on to “safely” direct it into the forest area, he said.

“A separate control room for this purpose has been set up at the Cumbum forest range office. Around 200 forest personnel from elsewhere have been deployed for the security of the local people,” the Chief Minister added. Meanwhile, an official release said the elephant is also tracked through radio collar. Three Kumki elephants (trained pachyderms used in subduing wild ones) are on the spot to support the operation, a release from the office of Supriya Sahu, state Additional Chief Secretary, Environment, Climate Change & Forest Department, said.

“Despite complex situation, all efforts are being taken to ensure safety of the public while ensuring the safety of the elephant as well,” the release added.

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