'Arikomban healthy': TN Forest Dept refutes reports about wild tusker's death

Conservator of Forests and Field Director of KMTR AS Marimuthu refuted social media reports about Arikomban's death, calling it "malicious and false".
File Photo of an elephant
File Photo of an elephant
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The Tamil Nadu Forest Department has refuted certain social media reports which claimed that the wild tusker Arikomban is dead. The department said that the elephant, which was first captured from the forest area of Idukki and relocated in June 2023 to the Cumbum area of the Kalakad Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve (KMTR) in Tirunelveli, is healthy.

AS Marimuthu, Conservator of Forests and Field Director of KMTR, refuting the social media reports about Arikomban's death, said that these reports are "malicious and false".

The Conservator of Forests in a statement on Monday said that the tusker was released in KMTR and it has been observed to have settled down well in the Upper Kodayar dam area.

The statement further said that Arikomban is sighted away from human habitations, indicating a possible behaviour change from crop-raiding to foraging in the wild. The statement also said that the movement of the tusker is being constantly monitored through the signals obtained from the radio collar fixed on the tusker.

Arikomban was tranquilized and captured by Tamil Nadu forest officials in April last year. He was then relocated to Periyar Tiger Reserve at a distance of 80 km from Chinnakanal in Idukki, where he created a havoc. Arikkomban was also radio collared.

The elephant had a deep wound on its trunk and the veterinarians, who were in the team of the Tamil Nadu forest department that captured it from Cumbum, had applied medication.

Also Read: What next for Arikomban? A rogue tusker and the flawed solutions on offer

(With IANS inputs)

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