Raipur: As many as 63 people died in Chhattisgarh in wild animal attacks including those by elephants in past one year, Forest Minister Mahesh Gagda told the State Assembly on Wednesday.
"Sixty three people lost their lives in elephant and other wildlife attacks in the state in 2014-15," Gagda informed the House.
He was replying to a question raised by Congress legislator Amarjeet Bhagat during Question Hour.
Bhagat, an MLA from Sitapur constituency in North Chhattisgarh which is known for human-wild elephant conflict, asked the minister to inform what steps are being taken to check the long-standing menace.
In his reply, Gagda said the forest department has been making extensive efforts to check the wild elephant menace in the region.
Public awareness campaign are being run, trainings conducted for villagers to deal with wild elephants, among others.
Subsequently, Bhagat said, "The tribals and villagers in northern part of the state have been bearing the brunt of elephant attacks for past several years."
Despite loss of their family members, property as well crops, the state government was still not at all serious for them. What concrete action will be taken by the government in this regard? Bhagat said.
On this, Gagda said the department has been putting all efforts to overcome the situation and if local public representatives can give their suggestions on the issue, they will be welcome and those ideas shall be shared for implementation.
Notably, the thick forested northern region, comprising Surguja, Korba, Raigarh, Jashpur and Korea district, are notorious for human-elephant conflict.
The region has witnessed several killings of tribals and widespread damage to houses and crops by rogue elephants in past years.