The Elephants from Nepal are moving towards UP's Terai Forests in India. This is infiltration from across the border of a different dimension altogether. These migrants to the Terai forests of Uttar Pradesh are elephants that escaped the poachers, deforestation, and lack of fodder in their habitat that has left them with no alternative but a crossover and are making the Terai regions of UP their new habitat.
For the last two years, a large number of Jumbos from neighbouring Nepal have crossed over to the forests of Behraich and Lakhimpur in UP. Last week, a big herd of elephants crushed over 33 acres of cane crop in Rampurwa village under Katraniaghat Tiger Reserve in Behraich district.
The farmers in the villages near Terai forest have been waking day and night to save their cane and paddy crops from these migrant Jumbos. The farmers said that despite being informed about the incidents, the forest staff never came to their rescue and so far, these unwanted guests from Nepal have damaged several hundred bighas of cane crop.
Similar is the situation in Lakhimpur where wild elephants from Nepal have been damaging crops in the villages near Dudhwa National Park and Pilibhit Tiger Reserve.
According to the forest officials of Katraniaghat Tiger Reserve, these elephants have been migrating to Terai forests for the last decade. Earlier, the elephants from the neighbouring Royal Wardia Park of Nepal used to crossover in search of food and water but not to settle here. But for the last two years, these elephants have made Terai forests their habitat. At present, over four dozen elephants have made Katraniaghat Tiger Reserve their habitat and a similar number are there in Dudhwa, which is adjacent.
Wildlife experts say that elephants get enough food in Terai forests and there is an abundance of water as rivers Sharda and Girwa flow from this region. Besides, the poaching activities in Nepal go unabated which is not the case in the Terai forests of UP.
According to the experts, the dense forests of eastern UP in Bahraich are no different from their old home which has thick foliage, cane forests and the sparkling clean water of the Girwa river. Due to this, a maximum of these elephants prefer to settle in the Katraniaghat Tiger Reserve of Behraich.