In a very poignant scene, a mother elephant refused to part with its dead calf for the second consecutive day at Gudalur in The Nilgiris on Tuesday.
The estate workers, on hearing continuous trumpeting of a herd of three wild elephants, had informed the Forest Department staff on Monday morning. A team, led by senior officials, then arrived and fired crackers to drive them away. However, the elephants refused to leave and began to charge on the staff forcing them to suspend the driving operation on Monday. Again on Tuesday morning, the staff turned up to seize the body of the dead animal
But the mother jumbo continued to stand guard near the dead one, while two other elephants retreated into the forest cover. It remained furious and came forth to attack the forest personnel.
“We expect the mother elephant to abandon the carcass of its calf once it begins to decay and emits foul smell. Then, the body will be retrieved and a post-mortem performed to know the exact reason for its death,” said a senior Forest Department staff.
The official also said that the elephant has been located in a spot near a tea estate, away from human settlements. “If the jumbo gets disturbed during the driving operation, then there are chances for the animal to intrude into the residential areas leading to conflict. We have advised the estate labourers to abstain from work until the jumbo goes back into the forest,” he added.
Close shave for tourist
A foreign tourist, who was cycling her way near Mudumalai, had a narrow escape when an elephant came charging at her in The Nilgiris. The video, being circulated in the social media, shows the woman trying to run away from an elephant, but suddenly stops and just keeps a cautious watch on the jumbo. The elephant too slows down and turns away to retreat into the forest cover. The foreign tourist then pedals away.