India: Passenger train kills two elephants walking on track

Speeding trains have hit dozens of wild elephants in the past



Villagers watch preparations to bury two wild male elephants after they were killed by a train in Durung Pathar, in the northeastern Indian state of Assam. (AP)
Villagers watch preparations to bury two wild male elephants after they were killed by a train in Durung Pathar, in the northeastern Indian state of Assam. (AP)

By AP

Published: Wed 1 Dec 2021, 6:46 PM

A passenger train has hit and killed two wild elephants in northeastern India’s Assam state, authorities said on Wednesday.

“The two adult elephants were walking on the railway track when the train, on its way to the eastern tea-growing town of Dibrugarh from New Delhi, ran over them, killing them almost immediately,” Assam wildlife ranger Dilip Kumar Das said.

The accident occurred late Tuesday, he said. Authorities went to the site, surrounded by thick forests, on Wednesday and buried the bodies after carrying out an autopsy, Das said.

Wild elephants often stray into human habitations this time of year, when rice fields are ready for harvesting, he added.

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Speeding trains have hit dozens of wild elephants in Assam in the past, forcing Indian Railways, which runs the trains, to regulate speed in known elephant zones.

Assam has an estimated 5,000 wild Asiatic elephants.


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