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Wildlife attacks: Chief Minister directs to hold a high-level meeting in Kerala's Wayanad

Thiruvananthapuram: Chief Minister of Kerala, Pinarayi Vijayan on Saturday directed officials to hold a high-level meeting to discuss the issues related to wildlife attacks in Wayanad.
According to the CM of Kerala, a meeting will be held in Wayanad on February 20. Revenue, Forest and Local Self-Government department ministers will attend the meeting. People's representatives including the representatives of local bodies of Wayanad district and the officials including high level officials will participate in the meeting.
Meanwhile, amid the growing concern, a significant protest unfolded in Pakkam near Pulpally in Wayanad district on Saturday.
The body of Paul, a victim of an elephant attack, was brought to Pakkam from Kozhikode Medical College. The protestors gathered, blocking a forest department jeep.
Allegations were made by the localities, against the forest department for not taking adequate measures to prevent wildlife attacks.
Simultaneously, another incident was reported where a cow was found dead, purportedly due to a wild animal attack near Kenichira this morning.
Enraged locals brought the cow's body and placed it on the bonnet of a forest department jeep, intensifying the demand for immediate action.
The situation remains tense in Wayanad as authorities grapple with the increasing frequency of wildlife-related incidents. The upcoming high-level meeting is anticipated to address strategies and measures to mitigate the rising challenges posed by such attacks in the region.
Earlier, senior Congress leader and Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi sent a letter to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan requesting decisive action on the death of a man due to an elephant attack in the state's Wayanad district recently.
Congress MP Rahul Gandhi wrote to the Kerala Chief Minister about the death of a Wayanad native in a wild elephant attack and requested the state government take action to protect the communities and to put in place an efficient quick response mechanism for emergencies of this nature.
In the letter, Rahul Gandhi said, "I hope this letter finds you well. I am writing to you regarding the shocking demise of Ajeesh Panachiyil from Payyampally. He was fatally attacked by an elephant. Another life has been tragically lost in Wayanad due to a wildlife attack. He was not only the sole breadwinner of his family but also the primary caregiver for his bedridden mother. My heart goes out to his family, especially his ailing mother and young children."
"The spate of wildlife attacks, especially elephant attacks, has caused tremendous damage to the lives and livelihoods of the people of Wayanad. The people in my constituency have paid a huge price due to the rising instances of human-animal conflict, and our communities, especially those residing adjacent to the forests, live in perpetual fear," it said.
"We have time and again raised the issue of human-wildlife conflict and sought your intervention to mitigate such attacks in Wayanad, particularly to protect our farmers. However, the lack of a comprehensive action plan to tackle this issue has only served to aggravate the conflict," the letter stated.
"In this backdrop, I urge the state government to take decisive action to protect our communities and to put in place an efficient, quick response mechanism for emergencies of this nature. I would also like to request that the state government enhance compensation for the families of the deceased," it said further.

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