In the Kheroni area of West Karbi Anglong district, a herd of wild elephants roaming freely for the last many days in Kheroni area have created havoc and spread panic among people.
According to the villagers, people are not able to sleep peacefully at night, nor are they able to go to work in the fields fearlessly during the day.
Since it is time for harvest, people have to stay awake all night to save their lives and the lives of children in addition to their homes.
People are burning fire, making noise, bursting crackers and spending the whole night driving the elephants away.
However, in the evening hundreds of wild elephants divide themselves into many herds and start moving from one village to another destroying crops.
It may be mentioned that for the last three-four years, in many villages across the Kapili river like Bogadi Ghat, Cherapathar, Menmeji, Sildubhi, Mazgaon, Matikhola including many villages in the Kheroni area like Kheroni Nepali Basti, on this side of the Kapili river, and Kachari Basti alias Tilha Basti, Bagisa Dubhi, Dikhreng, Navgharwa Basti, Majh Basti, Purna Basti, Ranaima, Jamthar, Lambapathar, In various villages of Vatichor, Matikhola and Hawaipar, Maylu, etc., wild elephants have come and gone and created untold miseries.
According to some people, the main reason for this is that sugarcane, paddy, maize, wheat, mustard etc. are cultivated in the villages and wild elephants get something to eat in any month.
The elephants do not get anything to eat due to the nearby protected forest being hollow from inside due to rampant deforestation.
People claim that a few years ago there was no such nuisance of elephants, because the number of elephants in the nearby Amreng protected forest was not so many.
Those elephants would sometimes go back to the forest across the Kapili river at night until dawn.
But allegedly these wild elephants came out in search of food from many areas of neighboring district Hojai, often entering in herds in different villages of Kheroni area as crops mature.
They destroy the crops of poor farmers, grains kept in homes, etc. Now, due to the destruction of agriculture, it has become difficult for many poor farmers to maintain their families, educate the children and even study.
Farmers of Kheroni area say that within this year wild elephants have destroyed crops worth crores of rupees of the farmers.
The poor farmers allege that there is no one to take care of the farmers troubled by the orgy of wild elephants.
Despite repeated requests, government officials and leaders to get rid of this elephantine problem, no result has been found so far.