Panel to recommend shooting tusker that trampled auto driver; family to get Rs 10 lakh today

Biju, who was trampled to death by a wild tusker; the protest march led by people in the area to the Kannamala Forest Station. Photo: Nikhil Raj/Manorama

Pathanamthitta: The massive protests which broke out at Thulappally here on Monday over the death of an autorickshaw driver in a wild elephant attack came to an end after it was decided in a meeting that it would be recommended to shoot the tusker down and compensate the victim's family. 

In an emergency meeting chaired by the District Collector, it was decided to distribute Rs 10 lakh as financial assistance to Biju's family today. There was also a recommendation to increase the compensation to Rs 50 lakh. It was decided that Biju's son would be given a temporary job, which would later be made permanent as soon as a vacancy occurred. Deputy Ranger Kamalasanan would be directed to go on compulsory leave. 

Earlier today, a huge number of people marched to Kannamala forest station alleging lapses in finding a solution for the wild animal attacks in the area. As police blocked the march, the agitators observed a sit-in protest on the road.

The people said they couldn't live peacefully on their own land due to the recurrent wild animal attacks. Some of them alleged that the forest officials are not initiating any action to find a permanent solution to the issue. 

“Fences should be replaced with crash barriers. But the officials won't do it. As crash barriers do not require any regular maintenance, they can't swindle money from the fund allotted for repairs,” alleged a native. 

Biju (50) was trampled to death by a wild elephant near his house at Thulappally early on Monday. The jumbo attacked the man when he came out of his house after hearing the animal uprooting a coconut tree on his plot.

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