Global Views
   Middle East & Africa
 Embassy News
 Arts & Living
 Travel & Hotel
 Medical Tourism New
 Letters to Editor
 Photo Gallery
 News Media Link
 TV Schedule Link
 News English
 Hospitals & Clinics
 Flea Market
 Moving & Packaging
 Religious Service
 Korean Classes
 Korean Weather
 Real Estate
 Home Stay
 Room Mate
 English Teaching
 Job Offered/Wanted
 Hotel Lounge
 Foreign Exchanges
 Korean Stock
 Business Center
 PR & Ads
 Arts & Performances
 Restaurants & Bars
 Tour & Travel
 Shopping Guide
 Foreign Missions
 Community Groups
 Foreign Workers
 Useful Services
 ST Banner Exchange
Letters from India
Needed a Scientific Probe into Bamunipahar Tragedy
By Nava Thakuria
Special Correspondent
A scientific probe into Bamunipahar tragedy needs to be started.

Many questions still remain unanswered by Assam forest department over the mysterious deaths (planned murders?) of 18 wild Asiatic elephants on Bamunipahar in Nagaon locality on May 12 (as the authority claimed) because the final report rested on the assumption (not scientific analysis) that the bulky animals died due to electrocution by a major thunderbolt.

Analysing many loopholes in the investigation report, which was prepared by a government formed committee and released by State Forest Minister Parimal Suklabaidya during a formal press conference on June 3, 2021 in Guwahati, environment enthusiasts insisted on a high level scientific probe into the incident to unearth the real cause of those jumbos’ shocking bereavements.

Nature's Beckon, an influential conservation group of northeast India, has lately urged State chief minister Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma to initiate a proper investigation into the matter. Its Director
Soumyadeep Datta, while expressing serious doubts over the probing process, emphasized on involving experts from the fields of Geology, Electrical Engineering, Science of Lightning (Thundering) along with Zoological Survey of India, Wildlife Institute of India, Police department in the probe committee.

Mentioning about the 90 pages investigation report, released after repeated demands from various organisations and environment enthusiasts, Datta termed it as ‘full of misinformation with a pile of
unnecessary details added to make the document appears credible.’

Moreover, the investigation process involved only veterinarians, who are directly or indirectly related to the forest department and all the tests were conducted in their own laboratories keeping no space for independent test-centers.

Minister Suklabaidya, form the very beginning, continues asserting that all the jumbos on Bamunipahar under Kundalini reserve forest in Nagaon district died of a massive thunderbolt. For the obvious reason, the departmental enquiry involved only two elephants for necessary dissections keeping as many as 16 animals out of any forensic examinations, claimed Nature’s Beckon’s director Soumyadeep Datta.

To prove that all the elephants died because of the electrocution by lightning, the ear-drums of the victims should have been examined.

Moreover, the sensitive organ (to thunderbolt impact) like heart (of every elephant) was not thoroughly investigated. The committee
mentioned that samples were collected randomly, but did not specify any carcass, which is nothing but an attempt to hide important evidences, asserted conservationist Bhaskar J Barua.

Barua, who is an engineering graduate and a member of Nature’s Beckon, asserted that the forest department’s report was ‘based on assumptions with no scientific analysis’. Nowhere does it say that lightning killed the elephants. Rather they assumed that lightning was the main culprit, said Barua adding that the leaked histopathology report also hinted for a tentative diagnosis of high voltage electrocution that killed the jumbos.

The single page histopathology report that started circulating since 24 May even inspired many so-called experts to conclude that the jumbos were killed by a thunderbolt. Signed by professor SM Tamuli, Pathology department head and Pathology assistant professor A Deka (from College of Veterinary Science, Assam Agricultural University), the report came to the conclusion as a tentative diagnosis that lesions were suggestive of ‘high voltage electrical burn injury.’

Soon after the news broke on 13 May through various media outlets, sensations prevailed among the common people. Elephants are adored as a symbol of Lord Ganesh (also known as Ganapati and Vinayaka), the most worshipped son of Devi Parvati and Shiva Mahadev in Hindu mythology and many devotees of the neighborhood arrived at the remote location to pay their last respects to the dead. Later the elephants were buried with flower at the same place as the customary ritual.

The issue got public attention with a sharp statement from All Assam Engineer’s Association (AAEA), where it described the lightning argument as absurd. The forum of electrical, electronics, mechanical, etc, engineering graduates asserted that if, at all, such a massive thunderbolt had stricken on Earth that night to kill the giant animals within a second, then gloomy days are ahead of the wildlife and human population.

The engineer’s forum argued that even the victim animals were assumed to be very close to each other during the incident (to get electrocuted at a time), their carcasses should have been found
together, but in reality it was found that their bodies were seen scattered by around 100 meter. On the other hand, if the animals faced the thunderstrike as they were found lying on the ground, it needed a massive strike covering over a thousand square-meter area on the hillock.

Datta also had a pertinent question to ask, if the Bamunipahar area was an elephant habitat and a known animal corridor (as mentioned in the released report), how the forest department could provide a no-objection certificate to a giant solar power project coming up in the locality. Moreover, he added, a group of local youths urged the minister during his visit to the site to check the matter seriously, but why he did not pay attentions to them!

The solar power plant with the capacity of around 15 megaWatt at the foothills of Karbi Pahar recently received media’s low-key responses even after hundreds of marginal farmers in Mikir Bamuni grant village (under Samaguri revenue circle in Nagaon) continued protesting against the Azure Power Forty Private Limited, which allegedly grabbed their fertile land, cultivated by them for generations, for the project.

For over a year, a group of Karbi and Adivasi villagers are fighting for their land rights and many of the protesters were even put behind the bars by the administration. The 400-million-dollar company claimed it bought the land from the erstwhile landlord’s (zamindar) family in August 2020. When India was facing the severe Covid-19 pandemic, the company also took possession of the land under police protections.

Now the matter has reached Gauhati High Court, where the highest court in the State on 1 March ordered status quo on the matter. Now the construction works of the power plant, put up in a campus of over 276 bighas of land by the company (claimed by the Saket-New Delhi based corporate office to be a dedicated solar power company with a journey spanning over a decade), has been ceased.

Related Articles
    Welcome to Pragjyotishpur Literature Festival
    Questioning Credibility of Editors Guild of ...
    When 177 Global Leaders Stand behind Prof. ...
    Manifesting Patriotism on I-Day
    Raising Demand for a Media Grievance Cell
    India: Rhetoric Boycott Call by Separatist ...
    Banning Polygamy with Consensus
    No End to NRC Controversy
    Protecting Rhinos in Manas National Park
    When Scribes Face Corruption Charges and ...
    Complainant to Re-approach Court on NRC Assam ...
    My Unforeseen Journey as a Scribe
    Converting Profit Hungry APDCL to Consumer ...
    Dreaming of a World with Three Zeros
    After Two Years of Military Coup Myanmar Heads ...
    When India’s Highest Court Faces an Unwanted ...
    Riding City Buses in Guwahati
    When Rumour Kills a Mainstream Newspaper!
    Dissecting Assam NRC for Better Understanding
    Vehicular Speed That Kills Millions of Indians ...
    Intriguing Debate on Automobile Mishap
    Projecting Guwahati as a Krira Prangan
    New York Times: Editions, Visibility, ...
    Northeast Celebrates I-Day with Full Patriotic ...
    Marching Ahead with the Spirit of Swatantra ...
    Time for Journalists to Be Cautious, Authentic ...
    Prakash: Throwing Light on Tibetan Literature ...
    When Repeated FIRs Lodged against an IAS ...
    Developing Guwahati as a people-friendly city
    Negating PSO Culture among Media Persons
    Losing Public Goodwill: Assam Media's Way
    Global Award to Journalist Nava Thakuria
    India’s Restive Region Sets to End 2021 ...
    RSS Condemns Islamist Attacks on Hindu ...
    When RSS Chief Bhagwat Articulates Agendas
    Let’s Talk about Self-Reform and Financial ...
    'Self-reform and Financial Transparency in ...
    Tibet Sympathizers to Lodge Protest against ...
    Prof. Yunus Receives Laurel, Bangladesh Adds ...
    India Practices Secularism, Democracy and ...
    Pandemic-Hit Book Publishers Eye for Openings
    India: Persisting Vulnerability to Scribes
    Bharat: Nurturing Nationalism with National ...
    POK Editor Bats for More Exchanges
    Cries Mounted for Reviving Nabin Chandra ...
    Scam, Media Outburst and Its Aftermath
    Amidst Chinese Threat Dalai Lama Concludes ...
    Asserting Media Person’s Rights in India
    China’s Myanmar Bonanza Sans Responsibility
    Manufacturing Misguided Protests in Assam
    Assam Forum Bats for Work Permits to ...
    Bhupen-da Came alive with Dhola-Sadiya Bridge ...
    Remembering My Principal Sir!
    Saluting Tricolour to Defy Militants’ Diktat ...
    Underlining India’s Productive Engagement in ...
    A Conservator Constitutional Head in Northeast ...
    Young Journalist Killed in India, ...
    Unpaid Media Employees of Northeast India
    Journalist Body Urges Political Parties to ...
    Saving the Tigers from Extinction
    Glorious Tribute to Bhupenda
    Burmese Students Term New Government Bogus
    Burma Turns Hostile to Indian Separatist Groups
    Northeast India Rediscovers Tricolour
    Indian People’s Win Inspires Burmese Activists
    Nobel Support for a Noble Cause
    Activists Condemn India’s Arm Deal with Burma
    Protest Note from Guwahati Press Club
    Journalists’ Killings: Justice Eludes in ...
    Games Gogoi Played In Assam Polls
    Remembering Parag: Assam’s Way
    Helicopter Missing from Northeast Indian Sky
    Allegations Poured on Indian Premier
    Allegations Fired at Indian Premier
    Rising Resentment against Corruption in India
    Satellite News Channel Launched in Northeast ...
    Looking at Burma's Forthcoming General ...
    Burma Election, Refugees and Media’s Role
    When British Newspaper Tenders Apology to ...
    TST Contributor Honored with Excellence Award
    Burning Rhino Horns: Creating Controversy
    Condemning Military Election in Burma
    Protest against Military Election in Burma
    Burmese Demonstrates Anger against Junta
    Assam: A Pretending Warrior and Peace ...
    Southeastern Bangladesh Erupts in Violence
    Grim Picture of Human Rights in India
    Burma on Radar as New Delhi Prepares for ...
    Assam: Where People Defy Militant's Diktat
    Bangladesh Readies to Hang Bangabandhu Killers
    International Film Festival Begins in Guwahati
    RK Pachauri under Attack from British Media
    Selling News Space Culture in India: Concerns ...
    Asian MPs Insist on a Free & Fair 2010 Burma ...
    Guwahati Festival to Highlight Terrorism
    Assam: Brutal Armed Group, Incompetent ...
    Without Suu Kyi, 2010 Polls Have No Meaning
    Beijing Eyes Northeast India !
    Bumpy Road to Copenhagen
    Nava Thakuria Elected Assistant Gen. Sec. of ...
    Northeast India: People Defy Militant’s ...
    Northeast India: Waiting for Justice for 18 ...
    Northeast India : Where Protector Turns Killer
    Raising Support for Democracy in Burma
    Indian Muslims Raise Voices for Uighurs
    Will Captive Breeding of Vultures Work?
    Northeast India: Trailing a Notorious Rebel
    Is Burma Junta Learning from Cyclone Nargis!
    Is a Nepali Fugitive Winning Indian Election?
    When Politician Uses Scribe for Vested Interest
    Assam Editor Killing: Protest Continues
    Freedom under Chinese Boot in Tibet
    Pride and Poverty: India's Amazing Blending
    Sri Lankan Crisis: Shelling on Hospital ...
    Northeast India Defies Militant's Diktat:
    Woman Journalist Killed in Nepal
    Urging for Insurance Coverage to Media Persons
    Bangladesh: Waiting for a Stable Democratic ...
    ULFA Leader Appeals UNHCR for Political Asylum
    Assam Mourns Death of Mumbai Terror Attack
    When an Assamese Magazine Rejects ...
    Bangladesh Polls: Apprehension on Final Outcome
    Manipur Asks for CBI Probe into Scribe's ...
    Scribe's Killing in Northeast: Demand for ...
    'Suspend Burma from BIMSTEC'
    Guwahati Citizens Meet to Discuss Terrorism
    Group Clashes Shock Northeast India
    When Media Distorts Facts to Manufacture News
    Where Editors Swindle Reporters
    Calling upon Comprehensive Packages for ...
    Highlighting Media's Challenge and ...
    Media on Media' Glitch: An Exercise of ...
    An Ignited Assam Baffles ULFA
    Assam Defies Militant's Diktat to Celebrate ...
    Journalists Dare to Defy Militants' Diktat
    When Bangladeshi Influx Ignites Assam
    Nepal Can Expect a Consensus of Government Soon
    Victorious Maoists Lose Battle for Kathmandu
    India: Assam Party Waits for an Opportunity
    Burma after Nargis: Devastated, Depressed and ...
    When a Disastrous Regime Continues
    Exposing Corrupt Journalists of Our Time
    Nepal Waits a Republic Regime: Diasporas Don't ...
    Waiting for Consensus on Government in Nepal
    Condemnation Pours on Burmese Junta as Suu ...
    American-Assamese Preparing White Paper on ...
    Assam Government Bows Down to Public Outrages
    Shaky Start to Druk Democracy
    India and Burma Push Joint Project
    Bhutan Turns Democratic
    Disregarding Public Outcry: Assam Government's ...
    Army, Police Heads Become Governors in North ...
    Rhinos Dwindle as Poaching Thrives in India
    Taste of Democracy in Bhutan Is Not for ...

Nava Thakuria, who serves as a special correspondent for The Seoul Times, is based in Guwahati of Northeast India. He also contributes articles for many media outlets based in different parts of the glove, and can be contacted at






The Seoul Times, Shinheung-ro 36ga-gil 24-4, Yongsan-gu, Seoul, Korea 04337 (ZC)
Office: 82-10-6606-6188
Copyrights 2000 The Seoul Times Company  ST Banner Exchange