Assam: Environment activists demand scientific probe into elephant deaths

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Guwahati: An environmental organisation has urged Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma to initiate proper scientific investigation into the recent death of 18 elephants at a proposed reserve forest in Nagaon district.

‘Nature’s Beckon’ said the recent postmortem and investigation reports on elephant deaths released by forest minister Parimal Suklabaidya appear to be “flawed”.

As an organisation, committed to the cause of biodiversity conservation, “we appeal to the chief minister to intervene in the matter and constitute a new committee to scientifically investigate and find out the truth behind the death of 18 wild Asian Elephants”, Nature’s Beckon director Soumyadeep Datta said on Tuesday.

Datta called for a committee, headed by a retired Judge, and comprising a geologist, electrical engineer, lightning expert, Zoological Survey of India’s representative, Wildlife Institute of India’s representative, Police officer and representative of civil society groups to investigate the deaths of the elephants on May 12 at Bamunipahar.

He also demanded that anyone found guilty of destroying or hiding any kind of evidence with regard to this incident must be convicted at the earliest.

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