PM-2 'Arishi Raja' captured by officials after hours of long effort

Wayanad: The wild elephant Arishi Raja (PM-2) that spread fear and panic in Sulthan Bathery area has been tranquilised by the forest guards. At around 9 am on Monday, a special task force tranquilised the elephant.

The elephant was tranquilised in the forest area near the RRT Range Office. Officials said that the elephant would be taken to the sanctuary in Muthanga.

The previous day, the forest guards, who tried to tranquilise the elephant and capture it with the help of Kumki elephants, failed in their efforts after another elephant gave protection to PM-2.

The Kerala Forest Department, which had constituted a team of 150 officials to capture wild tusker, codenamed Pandalur Makhana 2, failed in its attempt on Sunday, official said.

On Sunday, forest team members told media persons in Wayanad that the elephant was within the reach of the team but could not dart it as it was with another elephant.

Wild tusker PM 2 had killed two people and was radio-collared by the Tamil Nadu Forest Department after it had forayed into Gudalur human settlement. It had reached the Sulthan Bathery town a couple of days before and attacked Subair Kutty who was walking along the footpath during early morning hours. The elephant was later driven into the forest area by Forest Department officials.

After several complaints from the local people, the state Forest Department constituted a team of 150 men including veterinarians and the Rapid Response Force Team of the department, and two kumki elephants.

However, even after extensive combing on Sunday, the elephant could not be captured.

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