Rahul Gandhi seeks end to ‘human-animal conflict’ in Wayanad, reviews situation

Senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Sunday reviewed the situation in Kerala’s Wayanad, a day after violent protests broke out in the district over the deaths of three people in wild animal attacks. He sought a solution to the “human-animal conflict” and pushed for compensation to be given to the victims’ families.

Rahul Gandhi, who represents Wayanad in the Lok Sabha, said that Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka should ‘coordinate with each other’ to solve the human-animal conflict.

“There is a question of interstate cooperation between Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. We will try to improve the coordination as far as the issue is concerned,” the Congress leader said.

He said that there is a delay in providing compensation to the families of animal attack victims. Rahul Gandhi said that one rapid response team is functioning in Wayanad, which is “not enough”.

“I have communicated to the district authorities to increase the number of teams and ensure that they are provided with all facilities,” he said.

The Congress leader also questioned the delay in the development of Wayanad Medical College. He said that he had written to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan about the issued and would write to him again.

“The government should bear the expense of those injured in the latest attacks. I had called the Chief Minister to talk about this issue, but he was not available. I will call him again and inform him directly about what the residents of Wayanad are going through,” Rahul Gandhi said.

On being asked whether he would contest from Wayanad for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, he said that he had come to address the issue of human-animal conflict and it was “not the place to talk politics”.

A strike was organised over an elephant attack in Pulpally on Saturday, which turned violent, with residents stopping a forest department vehicle and damaging it.

Meanwhile, the Chief Minister has given a direction to convene a high level meeting led by concerned ministers, to address concerns pertaining to the human-animal conflicts on February 20.

Published By:

Ashutosh Acharya

Published On:

Feb 18, 2024

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