Forest official who shot elephant at Bandipur National Park, fired

A Karnataka forest department staffer, who shot at an elephant in the Bandipur National Park on March 7 was sacked.

Officials said that Rahim, a temporary staffer, was responsible for shooting the elephant. He has been fired with immediate effect.

In a video of the incident that has gone viral on social media, the perpetrator was seen firing at the charging elephant from a moving safari car at the park. Umesh, a permanent employee of the Karnataka Forest Department, was with Rahim in the car. He is being investigated for filming the incident and sharing it on social media.

Before Rahim’s arrest, Randeep Hooda had shared the video on Twitter and requested officials concerned to take necessary action.

In subsequent tweets, Randeep shared updates about the incident, adding that he is “very grateful and impressed by the Field Director of Bandipur Tiger Reserve, Mr T Balachandra, IFS for prompt and decisive action against the culprits.”

T Balachandra, meanwhile, also spoke to news agency ANI about the incident and said, “An elephant shootout incident happened on March 7. A temporary staff, who shot at the charging elephant has been sacked. A permanent employee of the forest department is also under probe.”

The Bandipur National Park is known for its small population of tigers, elephants, spotted deer, gaurs (bison) and antelopes.