India probes dying of 18 elephants ‘hit by lightning’

A veterinarian checks the useless our bodies of untamed elephants, suspected to have been killed by lightning, on a hillside in Nagaon district of Assam state on 14 Might, 2021.

Indian authorities launched a probe on Friday into the deaths of at the least 18 elephants, as a number one conservationist raised doubts that the animals have been killed by lightning.

The useless herd was discovered within the hilly Kandali Proposed Reserve Forest within the northeastern India state of Assam on Thursday.

Forest officers and a neighborhood lawmaker, Jitu Goswami, informed AFP they believed the elephants died after lightning struck the forest.

However outstanding conservationist Soumyadeep Datta, from environmental activist group Nature’s Beckon, mentioned that was unlikely primarily based on social media pictures.

Datta informed AFP:

Poisoning might be behind the dying of the elephants. We’ve got to attend for the post-mortem report, which the forest division will do quickly.

A crew of vets and officers headed to the location on Friday along with Parimal Shuklabaidya, Assam’s forests and surroundings minister.

India is residence to just about 30 000 elephants, round 60 p.c of the wild Asian elephant inhabitants.

Lately there have been rising incidents of elephants killed by locals – and vice-versa – as people encroach additional into forest areas.

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