Protest breaks out in Wayanad over man-animal conflict

Thiruvananthapuram, Feb 17 (IANS) A massive protest broke out at Pulpally in Wayanad district of Kerala on Saturday when angry locals carrying the dead body of Paul — who was trampled to death by a wild elephant on Friday — staged a protest.

The protesters shouted slogans against the government for their callous attitude and not doing enough to address the man-animal conflict in Wayanad.

As police failed to pacify the protesters, another group came with the carcass of a cow, which they claim was eaten and left out by a tiger, the previous night in the same locality.

The protesters lifted the carcass and tied it to the bonnet of the forest jeep.

On Saturday, the various political parties called for a shutdown protesting against the government for failing to plug loopholes in the Wild Life Act.

On January 30, a local named Laxmanan was killed by a wild elephant. Last week, another local, Ajeesh, was killed by a wild elephant. On Friday, Paul was gored to death by a wild elephant.

The passionate pleas by the young daughter of Paul — how due to various flaws in the law she lost her father — have gone viral on social media.

“We are losing faith in the government as all assurances given to Wayanad people remain only election promises. We are thinking of boycotting the next elections,” said an angry resident during the protest.

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Saturday directed all the stakeholders to sit down together to discuss the issue of man-animal conflict.



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