Suntikoppa – A homemaker was killed by a wild elephant at 7th Hoskote village near Suntikoppa yesterday. The deceased has been identified as 45-year-old Saroja, wife of late Mani.
The incident happened at 6.15 am when she went to the backyard of her house to dump kitchen waste and fetch some drinking water from a public water tank. The elephant that came there from a nearby estate owned by one Irappa lifted Saroja with its trunk and smashed her on the ground.
Hearing her screams, neighbours rushed to the spot and took her to Madikeri District Hospital where she breathed her last. The elephant later made its way through the estate of one Gangadhar and a highway before entering the forest area. Suntikoppa Police Inspector Anoop Madappa and Forest officials visited the spot.
Former Forest Minister B.A. Jeevijaya visited the victim’s house and condoled her death. Saroja is survived by a daughter and a son. Suntikoppa Malayali Samaja President P.C. Mohan urged the Forest Department to drive away elephants which are roaming around 7th Hoskote.
Expressing grief and fear, other villagers demanded immediate measures by the Department. They claimed that labourers are scared to venture out for work.
7th Hoskote Panchayat Vice-President Mustafa warned of serious protest if the Forest Department ignored the fatal incident and failed to take appropriate measures to ensure safety of the villagers.
Farmers expressed their helplessness in maintaining agriculture and plantation crops which often get destroyed by wild elephants. People said trenches dug by the Forest Department were unscientific and were not stopping elephants from straying into villages.