Mission Arikomban won't prolong indefinitely: Forest Minister

AK Saseendran
A K Saseendran. File Photo: Manorama

Kochi: Forest Minister AK Saseendran stated that the government will implement the court directive on the translocation of rogue tusker Arikomban in Chinnaknal without much delay. Forest department officials have been asked to find out a new place for the same and submit a report in this regard, the minister told reporters here.

His statement comes a day after the Supreme Court had refused to entertain the appeal of the state government against the High Court order asking it to translocate the tusker to the Parambikulam tiger reserve in Palakkad district.

The state government wanted the rice-eating elephant to be sent to a training centre, noting it had killed seven people and destroyed several homes, but the apex court observed that the Kerala High Court had given a "reasoned" order based on the views of the expert committee.

"As a government, we have the responsibility to act in accordance with the verdicts of the judiciary. The government will not backtrack from that responsibility. A new location should be identified. Directions have already been given to the forest officials to find out a suitable place and report the same," Saseendran said.

Arikomban and two other rogue elephants have been causing destruction to life and properties of people in Chinnakanal.| Photo: Reju Arnold/Manorama

If they submit the report by tomorrow, it would be examined thoroughly and after informing the High Court further action would be taken, he said, adding that the issue cannot be prolonged indefinitely.

On Monday, a bench comprising Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud and justices P S Narasimha and J B Pardiwala had taken note of the urgent mentioning of the appeal by the state government and decided to hear it yesterday itself.

After hearing the matter for some time, the bench dismissed the appeal of the state government saying the recommendation to relocate the elephant was made by a committee of experts.

On April 12, the Kerala High Court refused to review its decision to translocate the rice-eating tusker to the Parambikulam tiger reserve.
(With PTI inputs)

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