Wai! Last week we saw an elephant electrocuted in Nganglam. The death of a giant in the manner it did was horrifying and sad.
What is of concern is that electric fences are not safe. This time it was an elephant. How could we be certain that such things will not happen to humans? Whose responsibility is it to straighten the slackened high-voltage electric wires?
If proper supervision is lacking, as can be inferred from the incident, it might do well that we don’t use electric fences to ward off the animals. We cannot leave the fence to function on its own. We cannot brush off the incident by simply saying that it was an unfortunate occurrence. We must be more responsible.
Some may wonder why anyone should harp on behalf of a dead elephant. For those villagers who have long been the victims of raiding elephants, it may just be a case of one marauding animal down. But what about our conservation policy? Isn’t it applicable when human carelessness is involved?
We know of the cases of human-wildlife conflict that happen every year. We also know of the utter devastation the victims feel at the wrath of the wild animals. But these are of our own making. If we had not intruded into their territory, the animals would not have come hunting down people. We must, therefore, device better ways to resolve the conflict because we are better animals than our wild cousins. If animals die for no fault of their own, and if we wait to set the things right until it costs some human lives, it seems really worrying.
While the farmers should have every right to protect their fields the environmental laws must grow more teeth when it comes to wildlife conservation. Sooner the better it will be.