Temple elephant flings stone at mahout who succumbs to injuries in Alathur , Palakkad

Temple elephant flings stone at mahout who succumbs to injuries in Alathur , Palakkad

Thiruvananthapuram,May4:  In a fit of rage, an elephant, taken for a temple festival to Palakkad district, hurled a stone at its mahout, causing him to die of grievous head injuries.

The incident occurred two weeks ago at Alathur in Palakkad during a temple festival, when the animal ran amok, picked up a stone with its trunk and hurled it at the 49-year-old mahout.

The injured man was taken to a local hospital, and later shifted to Kottayam Medical College Hospital, where he died on Monday, hospital sources said.

Dr Balakrishnan, neurology department head, told PTI that probably the victim’s brain was shattered in the impact of the hit.

Mahouts being killed by elephants during musth is a routine affair in Kerala, especially during temple festivals. Musth is a periodic condition in bull (male) elephants, characterised by highly aggressive behaviour and accompanied by a large rise in reproductive hormones.

According to V K Venkatachalam, secretary, Heritage Animal Task Force, three mahouts have become victims of jumbo fury in the State in the last 10 days in different incidents in Thiruvanathapuram, Parasala and Palakkad.

Ten elephants have died in Kerala since January this year during temple festivities, he added.

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