There is a total of 1,976 elephants living in different jungles of the State as per a counting conducted in 2017, informed Forests and Environment Minister Bijayshree Routray in the State Assembly on Wednesday.
In response to a question of Congress MLA Kailash Chandra Kulesika, the Minister informed that elephant census had been conducted in 1999, 2002, 2010, 2012, 2015 and 2017. He said Odisha forests’ elephant carrying capacity is 1,700 to 1,800.
While Kulesika wanted to know if the number of jumbo deaths is increasing by the year, Routray said there is no truth behind the allegation. However, he stated that elephants sometimes die due to electrocution after directly coming in contact with live wires and electric wires spread by farmers on farmlands.
The State Government has now taken many steps to check death of elephants due to electrocution in villages near forests.