The whole world is losing its forests due to industrialization processes, and one of the countries that are massively affected by deforestation is India. As a result of that one can see plenty of wandering elephants in the villages and communities.
Since their natural habitat got destroyed animals have become forced to find a new home in the crops fields or nearby villages, in fact anywhere where there is food.
But, people are still being afraid of the wild life and take some extreme measures to protect their property and food. One of the actions that appalled the whole world is the one of Bishnupur residents launching firebombs at a mother elephant and her calf to stop them enter into their crops. This moment has been captured in photos and it is not the only one, the next one shows villagers who throw stones at a herd passing through their village. The animals run in panic across the road, terrified from the ongoing attacks. It is a common thing for the villagers to burn torches to wave at the elephants and thus chase them away.
Fortunately, the youth in India is self-aware of the negative things that are happening in their country and they take photos of these incidents. In the following photo you will see how another elephant and her calf are trying to go through railway tracks that have been constructed through their natural home.
These images were captured by the young photographer Biplab Hazra who tried to raise awareness about the threatening conditions of elephants and to their endangered habitat.
The Independent reflects on the current condition of the elephants:
“The images highlight the extraordinary level of violence the endangered species faces as they try to survive in smaller, more fragmented habitats. Herds of elephants can cause significant damage to crops, impacting people’s livelihoods. Some farmers use flaming torches to frighten elephants away from inhabited areas.”
Mr. Hazra adds the following:
“This happens because the villagers have to save their crops. There are many elephant corridors in human habitations. I’m trying to show this and spread my photos to increase public awareness on the matter.”
In the last captured image you will see how angry villagers chase away elephants across farmland making them run through knee-deep water and high crops.
The villagers are trying to protect their land, but they do not know that elephants need up to 19 hours of day feeding, and produce around 220 pounds (100kg) of dung a day. The dung is a key way of spreading germinating seeds which is of incredible value in the maintenance the integrity of forests and grasslands.
The count of Indian elephants has rapidly decreased in the past several decades, and this represents a serious issue that needs to be urgently taken care of.