IN response to a question asked in Lok Sabha, Minister of State(MoS) in the Ministry Of Environment, Forest And Climate Change, Dr. Mahesh Sharma, today, February 8, 2019, made available the data pertaining death of elephants due to train Accident, electrocution, poaching and poisoning in last three years-
A total of 373 elephants have died unnaturally in last three years all over India. Of them, 62 died due to train accidents, 226 died due to electrocution, 59 died due to poaching and 26 died due to poisoning, informs MoS Dr. Sharma in Lok Sabha. He also added that “The Government has conducted inquiry and taken necessary action on death of wild elephants in every incident. FIR’s are also lodged with local police for taking necessary legal action”.
In response to another question specifically pertaining to elephant deaths due to train accident, the Central government informed in Lok Sabha that “Elephant death records due to train accidents are not available in the Ministry since 1987. However the elephant death due to train accidents, as per the information received from various states, during the year 2009-10 to 2018-19 is 153”.
The Minister also added that Supreme Court in the Writ Petition W.P. (C) No. 107 of 2013 Shakti Prasad Nayak Vs. Union of India & Ors. in its order dated September 2, 2014 , passed following orders:
- Necessary steps should be taken by the Railways all over the country to reduce the speed limit of running trains that are passing through dense forests. In case a speed limit is not followed/ appropriate action should be taken against the erring drivers and officials concerned.
- Railways to take steps to discontinue the movement of goods trains at night between Siliguri and Alipurduar.
- Divert fast moving and night trains through Siliguri -Falakata route.
Further, as per the information received from the States 13 cases have been registered against loco pilots wherein, Assam 2, Odisha 5 and Kerala 6. There is no information received regarding punishment to loco pilots by the Railway Department, informed MoS (Environment) in Lok Sabha.