Bison attack leaves one dead, woman critically injured in The Nilgiris

Coming in the wake of recent protests held by villagers in the Nilgiris district over official inaction on bison menace, a retired Army hospital staffer died and a woman sustained critical injuries after falling victim to such an animal attack in separate incidents in the district, on Wednesday.
Representative Image
Representative Image


According to sources, in one incident, Symond (85) from Black Bridge post office residential quarters on the Coonoor-Ooty national highway was retired after working as staff in the military hospital.

Symond had left the house informing his wife Lilly (70) about going to the bank. As he opened the gate, a bison, which was wandering nearby, charged at him and attacked him. On hearing his cries, neighbours rushed out of their houses and chased the bison away. They then took Symond to the Coonoor government hospital by ambulance. Upon examination, the doctors, however, declared Symond dead.

Symond is survived by his wife, two sons and two daughters. The incident plunged people of the neighbourhood into sorrow.

In another incident, Lakshmi (45), wife of Rajan from a village near Manjur, was engaged in plucking tea leaves along with other labourers in a tea estate owned by Devaki at Thalakkad Mattam in the morning when the attack happened.

While the workers were busy plucking tea leaves, a bison reportedly came charging at them from the bushes. While the panicked labourers took to their heels, Lakshmi, who was caught unaware, came under its attack.

After the bison moved away, the labourers took the critically injured woman to the Ooty government hospital for treatment.

The estate workers claimed that they have been frequently sighting bisons in the estate and urged the Forest department to drive them away into the forest cover.

It was only last month that villagers in the district resorted to a road block, demanding the concerned government officials to fix faulty streetlights in the locality after they claimed a risk to their lives from the bisons that frequented their neighbourhood.

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