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Search lights to help mitigate human-elephant conflict in Karbi Anglong

Karbi Anglong, July 25, 2013: In an effort to mitigate human-elephant conflict in nine high conflict prone villages of Karbi Anglong, Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) distributed search lights to aid the locals to keep watch during peak conflict seasons.

Eight search lights were given as part of the Karbi Anglong Conservation Project, with the support of Elephant Family and IUCN-Netherlands. The Forest Department authorities from Silonijan Range also distributed fire-crackers to the farmers.

The searchlights were given to help locals keep watch during high conflict seasons. Photo credit: Dilip Deori/WTI

Dilip Deori, Assistant Manager for the Karbi Anglong Conservation Project, commented on the need of the distribution saying, "Loss of paddy is a regular problem in fringe villages as elephants damage crops while crossing the fields at night. With the assistance of the beam of the search lights and crackers, the animals can be driven away without any actual human contact reducing, damage to both property and life. Apart from the villages related to conflict, some of the corridor adjacent villages were also chosen for the distribution which was done right before cultivation season in Chokihola."

Searchlights

The distribution took place at the Forest Beat Office at Chokihola
Photo credit: Winson Ronghang (for WTI)

The distribution took place at the Forest Beat Office at Chokihola and the Forest Range Officer of Silonijan was present along with other forest officials and the WTI team. Representatives were present from the nine villages, from the Kalapahar-Doigurung Corridor and areas of the East Forest Division of the Karbi Anglong District- Ram Terang, Sar Kro, Tokolangso, Nahorsola, Rongbong, Terang, Shyam Gaon, Hondem Singnar, Orang Basti and Bomkek Teron.

Conflict especially in the corridor-dependent villages is a regular occurrence, owing largely due to the lack of space for the elephants to roam around in without encountering human habitation. Through the project, WTI and its supporters including the Japan Tiger Elephant Fund has been working to secure the Kalapahar Daigurung Elephant Corridor as a long-term solution to human-elephant conflicts here. Efforts are on to facilitate voluntary relocation of all 19 families of Ram Terang village located within the corridor.

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