Killer Elephant Put To Death
Dec. 27, 1998
NEW DELHI, India (AP) _ An elephant that trampled 19 people to death over the last 1 1/2 years was put to death in northeastern India by government hunters, according to news reports Sunday.
Three hunters assigned by the forest department to carry out the killing shot the bull elephant, named Gobindra Singh, on Saturday evening in the remote Tinsukhia district in Assam state, 1,100 miles east of the capital, New Delhi, the United News of India said.
The elephant was declared a ``rogue'' last month after he killed a forest department veterinarian. The vet had tranquilized Gobindra for a medical check, then the elephant suddenly regained consciousness and attacked him.
Gobindra also damaged crops and destroyed more than 150 huts, the United News of India said.
It wasn't immediately clear why the animal wasn't destroyed sooner. But elephant hunting is banned in India and it's difficult to declare an elephant a rogue.
Wildlife experts say shrinking habitat and a rise in the number of elephants in the past 15 years have led to a change in the elephants' behavior, making some of them violent.
Wild elephants have killed nearly 400 people in Assam in the past 10 years.