(COLOMBO, LANKAPUVATH) –As the human-elephant conflict over the past five years took the lives of 375 people and 1,177 elephants, the Sri Lankan government has focused its attention to find an imminent solution to the conflict and save lives of both humans and elephants.
The government has received the cabinet nod to implement a new program to resolve the human-elephant conflict that is currently a major problem.
Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena recently drew attention to the problem presenting a special proposal to the National Sustainable Discourse to obtain all stakeholders’ ideas and suggestions on resolving the human – elephant conflict.
Under the new program the government had decided to construct 2,651 kilometers of new electric fences in areas recently identified as vulnerable to elephant attacks, especially near national parks and villages to prevent the elephants entering villages in search of food and water.
In addition, measures will be taken to repair the malfunctioning segments and connect the inactive sections of the already established 4,349 kilometer long electric fence, to enhance the human resources and facilities required for a special program to protect and maintain elephant fences, and to properly maintain the new elephant fences.
Accordingly, the Cabinet of Ministers approved the proposal made by Sustainable Development, Wildlife and Regional Development Minister Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka to obtain necessary funds for the implementation of these programs in 2018.