21 elephants died due to electrocution in 2016-17: Vardhan

The highest casualties have been reported in Assam.

india Updated: Jul 24, 2017 20:28 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India, New Delhi
Harsh Vardhan,Elephants,Electrocution
A herd of elephants cross a road that passes through the flooded Kaziranga National Park in the northeastern state of Assam, India, July 12, 2017. (Reuters)

Twenty-one elephants have died due to electrocution between April last and February this year, Union Environment minister Harsh Vardhan said on Monday.

In a written reply in Rajya Sabha, he said that two tiger casualties have also been reported in 2017 due to electrocution.

In 2016-17, upto February 9, 21 elephant casualties have been reported, the highest in Assam, the minister said.

He said that the National Tiger Conservation Authority has issued generic guidelines for preparation of a Security Plan for tiger reserves which advises to carry out resource mapping which necessarily should include locations of electric transmission lines and electrical substations, besides carrying out patrolling.

“Further, such sensitive locations are mapped out in the overarching Tiger Conservation Plan mandated under section 38V of the Wildlife (Protection), Act 1972 for which dedicated prescriptions like Electric Line Patrolling are prepared and carried out,” he said.

With respect to ‘Project Elephant’, chief wildlife wardens have been asked to take up the issues with electricity departments to prevent sagging of electric transmission lines and maintenance to minimum ground clearance as per Rule 77 of Indian Electricity Rules, 1956, he said.

In reply to a separate question, Vardhan said that 75 tigers have died across the country in 2017, the highest 16 in May.

First Published: Jul 24, 2017 20:28 IST