Karnataka: Andhra tourists fined for taking selfies with elephant in Bandipur reserve | Bengaluru - Hindustan Times
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Karnataka: Andhra tourists fined for taking selfies with elephant in Bandipur reserve

By, Bengaluru
Feb 23, 2024 09:20 AM IST

Andhra Pradesh tourists fined ₹25,000 for taking selfies with violent elephant at Bandipur Tiger Reserve. Forest officials emphasize safety measures for visitors and wildlife.

Forest officials slapped 25,000 fine on Andhra Pradesh-based tourists, who were allegedly seen in a viral video taking selfies with a violent elephant recently at the Bandipur Tiger Reserve.

In the viral video, two individuals were seem narrowly escaping an approaching elephant while attempting to take selfies. (HT Archive)
In the viral video, two individuals were seem narrowly escaping an approaching elephant while attempting to take selfies. (HT Archive)

In the viral video, two individuals were seem narrowly escaping an approaching elephant while attempting to take selfies. As the footage circulated widely, the department decided to take action, an official said, adding they have taken stringent measures to ensure the safety of visitors and wildlife.

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“We have put up signboards and even issued cautions to tourists at checkpoints not to get down from vehicles amid the forest since wild animals cross,” AB Ramesh Kumar, director of forest reserve, told HT. “Despite warnings, tourists attempting to take selfies with animals risk their lives. Tourists are also instructed not to feed animals.”

Following the video, a probe was initiated, leading authorities to identify the tourists involved through their vehicle registration details. The incident occurred on February 11 near Moolehole in Bandipur when a group of tourists from Andhra encountered an elephant while traversing a forest road. While most managed to evade harm, one member fell victim to the elephant’s aggression.

In response, the Bandipur forest department conducted a thorough probe, leveraging media reports and inquiries led by the Bandipur Assistant Conservator of Forests (ACF) and Moohole Range Forest Officer (RFO). Subsequently, Murti, one of the tourists implicated in the incident, was fined 25,000.”

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