Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Baripada, Nov 21:
The tusker rescued from a ditch in Dhobatola village in Odisha’s Mayurbhanj district yesterday after a marathon effort strteching over two days died this evening.
Forest officials said the elephant had broken its two hind legs while falling into the 30-feet dry and rocky ditch on Ttuesday night and was unable to stand while an effort was mounted by forest officials to rescue it.
Its condition worsened after going without food and water for almost two full days since Tuesday night. The tusker was shifted to Baripada for treatment soon after being taken out of the abandoned dug well on Thursday.
“Exhaustion and dehydration, coupled with the broken legs, could be the reason for it death,” a forest official said.
An elephant expert from Nandanakanan and two doctors from the Odisha University of Agriculuture and Technology (OUAT) in Bhubaneswar, who were rushed to Baripada yesterday, made all out efforts to revive it, but in vain.
The tusker would be cremated after a post mortem is conducted tomorrow morning, divisional forest officer (DFO) Sanjay Swain said.
Local people, who had perched themselves atop machans on tree tops to keep a vigil on the movement of elephants damaging their crops, had seen a herd of 20 elephants moving in the paddy fields on Tuesday night.
One from the herd, which happened to be a tusker, fell into an abandoned well while it was passing through the fields. The tusker could not come out of the 25-30 feet deep ditch despite making desperate efforts, the locals said.
As news spread Forest, fire brigade personnel and police rushed to the spot and began their rescue action code named ‘Operation Gajaraj’ on Wednesday, which bore fruit on Thursday only to come to nought today.