Siliguri: A wild elephant, which strayed from nearby Baikunthapur forest into a Siliguri town yesterday, went on a rampage for around seven hours damaging over 40 houses and some vehicles before it was tranquillised.
A Forest Department official tries to tranquillise the elephant at a market square yesterday. Pic/PTI
The elephant was first spotted at Dabgram and Fulbari area of the North Bengal town in the early hours. Seeing the elephant, panic-stricken people started running helter-skelter and Forest personnel rushed to the spot to drive away the pachyderm to the forest.
The Forest personnel fired tranquilliser dart at the jumbo, but it failed to have any effect on the elephant and instead it went berserk and turned its wrath on the houses damaging walls and pillars.
Also, police had to use water cannon to keep away curious onlookers as the elephant went from Ektiasal area to Haidar Para, Sibram Palli, Temple Road and some other pockets of the city and even flattened some vehicles at a car garage after razing the boundary wall, a senior district officer said.
At least 40 houses apart from the garage were damaged by the pachyderm as it got annoyed due to the commotion and after being hit by the tranquilliser for the first time, a top forest official of Baikunthapur division said.
The elephant was finally tamed after seven hours when it was hit by tranquilliser dart for the second time as it headed towards a shopping mall ground floor. As the pachyderm got drowsy, it was put on a large 12-wheel truck with the help of two cranes after being tied with ropes and taken to Sukhna forest for release. Forest official said the jumbo will be examined by vets before being released.
Erode: A farmer was trampled to death by a wild elephant in Thalavadi forest area in this district, the police said yesterday. Nagarajappa was sleeping in his paddy field when the elephant attacked him late night on Tuesday, they added.