A five-month-old elephant calf fell into a 5-foot-deep farm well in Lipia village in Jharkhand’s Ramgarh district, around 50km from capital Ranchi early Friday, officials said.
The calf struggled in the well for over four hours and was rescued by the village men, who jumped into the well, tied a rope around the calf and pulled the animal out.
Forest ranger Amarender Kumar Singh said, “The calf was with a herd of six elephants. The herd was passing through the farm. But, the calf fell into the small well, dug for agricultural purpose in the village, on the way.”
He said a team of forest staff was sent to the village with an excavator. However, the calf had already been rescued by then, he said.
The mukhiya (village head) of Rakuwa panchayat, under the jurisdiction of which the village is, Suresh Rajak said a 40-year-old man spotted the herd and the struggling calf in the well around 7am when he went out to relieve himself. “He was injured by the herd and has been admitted to a hospital,” Rajak said.
The herd damaged the paddy, potato, beans and bottle gourd crops on a large scale in the village, he said. “Despite this, the villagers came out to rescue the calf. We have demanded compensation from the government for the crop loss. ”
Jageshwar Mahto, a resident of Lipia village who was part of the rescue team, said, “During the rescue operation, our main challenge was to protect ourselves from the herd of six elephants, which was around 200 metres away from the well. However, some men were brave enough to jump into the well and tie the animal with a rope safely. Then, we all pulled the rope up and rescued the elephant.”
He said they released the elephant calf in the forest area where the herd was staying.
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