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Farmer in Assam’s Baksa sentenced to 3 years in prison for ‘killing’ elephant

BAKSA: In a landmark judgment, Ranjan Singh, a farmer hailing from Baksa district in Assam’s BTAD region, has been sentenced to prison for three years and three months for ‘hunting’ a wild elephant on his farm. The jumbo was killed due to electrocution through GI wires illegally installed by Singh around his paddy field.

The incident took place at a paddy field at Kawli village under the Tamulpur police station in the Baksa district on August 28, 2018. The elephant, while attempting to enter the farm, got stuck in the wires, and died an excruciating death.

The same was reported by him to the Range Office in Tamulpur, the district headquarter.

The forest team along with police and SSB personals visited the place of occurrence and seized the carcass as well as the materials utilized in the incident.

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A case was registered at Tamulpur Forest Range Office under Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 following which Ranjan Singh was arrested.

The post mortem revealed the cause of death to be a cardiac and respiratory failure due to electrocution.

The Honourable District and Sessions Judge of Baksa conducted the trial proceeding of the case and on March 3 of 2021, the judgment was pronounced by him.

As per the judgement, Singh has been sentenced to three years and three months rigorous imprisonment and a fine of Rs. 10,000 in default rigorous imprisonment of further 2 more months.

The plea of being a poor fellow has not been considered since for such criminal activity of the accused, the elephant lost her life.

It is a landmark judgment and the entire team of Tamulpur Range, as well as the Veterinary doctor, have been appreciated for their gross effort to make it an exemplary judgment.

At least 6 elephants have been hunted at the Manas Tiger Reserve area and a number of tusks have been seized, which indicates a massive threat to the tuskers of this area.

(With inputs from Dipak Kumar Pathak)

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