In a tragic incident, at least 18 elephants died on Thursday on a hill along the border of Assam's Nagaon- Karbi Anglong district. The preliminary investigation revealed that the elephants could have been killed by lightning.
Amit Sahay, Assam's Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (Wildlife), said that the dead bodies of 18 elephants were found at two separate locations.
"Four elephant carcasses were found at one spot and 14 others at another spot. Veterinary doctors and forest department officials immediately rushed to the spot," Amit added.
Amit Sahay stated that an investigation will be conducted to ascertain the deaths of 18 wild elephants.
Assam Forest Minister Parimal Sulkabaidya mourned the death of elephants in the Kathiatoli range. He said he would visit the site with PCCF (Wildlife) and other officials to take stock of the situation.
After Karnataka, Assam has the second-highest number of elephants in India, according to the 2017 census. In 2002, a total of 5,246 elephants are there in Assam, while it increased to 5,719 in 2017.
As per a data tabled in Parliament, as many as 100 elephants had unnatural deaths in Assam from 2013 to 2016.