Frequent elephant killings: Speed limit for trains on Kanjikode-Walayar stretch at night

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An adult elephant was killed and her calf was possibly injured after being hit by a train passing through the Walayar forest in Palakkad on last October 14.

Chennai: The Madras High Court has ordered the Southern Railway to decrease the maximum speed of trains on the Kanjikode-Walayar route to 30 kmph at night considering the frequent collisions with wild elephants, leading to their deaths.

The order was issued by a division bench of the court while considering a case related to protecting the life of wild elephants. In its order, the court also warned the railway that train traffic along the Kanjikode-Walayar stretch would be banned during night-time if the speed limit was not followed strictly.

The court observed that around six wild elephants were being killed on the stretch every year after being hit by speeding trains. However, the railway pleaded with the court not to impose the speed limit as it was a crucial route. The railway also informed the court that it had implemented all the directives in an earlier order issued by the court, except one regarding installation of solar lamps beside the track.

The hearing in the case will continue.

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