Two killed by wild elephants
Wild elephants killed two people when villagers were trying to drive them away from Purbo Pathorerchar village in the district's Dewanganj upazila yesterday.
The dead are Abdul Latif, 50, of Pathorerchar village, and Jahurul Islam, 55, of Jhawdanga village of the same upazila.
Locals said a herd of around 70 wild elephants entered Pathorerchar from Garo Hills of Indian state of Meghalaya in search of food around 8:00pm Tuesday.
Villagers managed to chase away the animals from the locality around 9:30pm. But being chased by the inhabitants of Lukaichar in the Indian state, the elephants came back to the village around 11:00pm.
They made a fire and a loud noise so that the elephants left the village. At one stage, half of the animals went away from the village.
But the rest took shelter in a crop field in Madhyachar village and stayed there the whole night, said Rana of Pathorerchar who took part in chasing away the elephants.
Then the elephants went into Purbo Pathorerchar. Several hundred people attempted to drive them away around 8:30am yesterday.
During the drive, the animals attacked the villagers and killed Abdul Latif on the spot, said Rana.
Finally, the villagers managed to drive away 27-28 elephants out of 35 from Purbo Pathorerchar, while the others took shelter in jute fields, he added.
Later, a large number of villagers participated in chasing away the rest of the elephants. But in a counter chase, the animals trampled Jahurul to death, said Abdur Rashid Fatik, chairman of Dangdhara union.
Rashid also added that the elephants damaged over 200 acres of crops, including jute plants and sweet potatoes, in Madhyachar, Purbo Pathorerchar and Pathorerchar villages.
Contacted, Dewanganj Upazila Nirbahi Officer Saiful Islam said Tk 20,000 was given to each of the deceased's families.