"I think there's just one kind of folks. Folks."
In a heartwarming incident, an elephant on National Highway 31 near Garumara forest stood like a pillar to guard a four-year-old girl who fell off a scooter, from other herd members. The incident took place in Jalpaiguri district on Thursday, February 21, while a family of three people were returning to Lataguri after going for a prayer to a temple inside the forest.
The forest is divided into two parts by the highway. Businessman Nitu Ghosh was on his way back home in a two-wheeler, with his wife Titli and daughter Ahana, and stopped the scooter when we saw a herd of elephants crossing the road.
Officials said that Ghosh resumed his journey after a while when the herd had gone into the other side of the jungle. However, some members of the herd still happened to be inside the jungle, and as they suddenly appeared, the scooter almost ran into them. All three of them fell off the scooter as Ghosh had to apply the break suddenly.
Surprisingly, one of the elephants came forward and began guarding little Ahana, keeping her safe in the space between its legs, while the other members of the herd continued their journey. Sensing that the family was in trouble, a truck driver who was behind Ghosh’s two-wheeler hooted the horn loudly to try and scare away the tuskers. Soon, the elephants were gone, giving Ahana back to their mother, reported NDTV.
The family was taken to Lataguri by the truck driver and Ghosh and his wife, who had suffered injuries, were admitted to a Jalpaiguri nursing home. According to doctors in the private facility, although Ahana had not suffered any external injuries, she was traumatised.
During the past few months, in the same area, several people were injured and a tourist was killed by elephants. Ayan Chakraborty, ranger of Garumara South, said that it is common for elephants to stand on the highway while they move from one part of the forest to another. Forest department personnel, if informed, often scare them away with fire crackers.
While we get to hear about several hit-and-run cases, this incident is indeed exceptional. After all, the elephant turned out to be more humane than so many humans.
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