A herd of wild Elephants numbering around 40 have intruded in New Wokha village, about 6 kilometers from Wokha town, for the past two weeks, have been destroying crops and houses.
According to a press release issued by Lotha Hoho Wokha general secretary Mhondamo Ovung said a team led by Hoho chairman Mhao Humtsoe visited the area along with the officials of State Forest Department yesterday and informed that the elephants have been 'damaging agriculture crops including a few houses.' The release also informed all travelers, along National Highway 61 and those that are passing through the New Wokha village area, are apprised to be aware of the elephants and to take precautionary safety measures. The state Forest Department has also taken notice of this and the Lotha Hoho expressed hope that the concerned Department will take safety measures, to 'contain the menace of the animals.'
In a separate press release from the New Wokha Village Council Chairman Khyolamo Humtsoe has corroborate the presence of the elephants in the area. He informed that wild elephants have been in the area since many centuries, but due to extreme deforestation and jhum cultivation by the neighboring villages, they have started to enter the New Wokha village area in search of food as the villages have reduced jhuming to a great extent. Humtsoe informed that so far the elephants have 'destroyed two houses and number of Banana and Passion fruit farms belonging to the villagers.' No human casualties have been reported as of yet. Humtsoe added that volunteers from the village have been on vigil particularly for the past two nights as the herd came to the village only at night. The village is situated along the Wokha to Mokokchung National Highway 61 and as such, the Village Council advised travelers to be careful and as far as possible avoid travelling at night. It further informed that according to reports, the elephants came out even to the highway, especially at night. With the growing threat on human habitats, the village authority has appealed to the concerned departments to arrange competent measures for the safety of the citizens and their farms, as the citizens primarily depend on Agriculture and Horticulture products.