Hassan: The farmers and coffee planters of Hassan district in Karnataka who have incurred heavy crop losses due to the elephant menace, have warned the authorities that they will dig trenches around their farms to trap the wild elephants.
The warning of the farmers of Kattalli village near Sakleshpur town came on Thursday when forest department officials visited the area to assess the crop loss due to elephants.
The villagers maintained that the government is not bothered about the elephant menace and is not giving any directions to the forest department to deal with the issue.
If the government tells the forest department to drive away the elephant herds from this region, the task would be completed in a day. However, the government is not taking any decision in this regard, the villagers stated.
They said that in about eight days their crops will be destroyed. Hence, they will dig a 25 feet deep trench measuring 20×20 around their farms. “When the elephants fall into the trench, you (forest department officials) come, lift and take them away,” the farmers stated.
They said they will dig the trenches on their farms and not on the land belonging to the forest department. Until the elephants fall into the trenches and their trumpeting is heard by the government, there will be no solution to the elephant menace, the farmers told the officials.
The situation in the region is so serious that if their phone call is not received, family members come rushing to the farm fearing an elephant attack, the farmers said.
“We have sown and nurtured the coffee plants like our own children. We will wait till Saturday. If no action is taken, you will find all the elephants in trenches by Monday or Tuesday. We will not kill them, but call you when they are in the trenches,” they warned.
The authorities are in a predicament over the issue and are awaiting orders from the government to deal with the situation.