Source: The Statesman
KOLKATA, INDIA, October 2, 2001: The state forest department has stopped recruiting villagers to drive away elephants, after some of the animals went on a rampage in Bankura as a fall-out of an operation to catch them. The forest department believes that the hulla or driving parties, drive away the elephants only to drive them back again later. Many hulla parties double-crossed the department to continue getting work for a longer period, a senior official said, for the income of the driving party members would dry up if the elephant herds didn't attack the crop fields at regular intervals. No wonder, a 45-elephant herd, now roaming in Bankura and Midnapore, has no hulla party to drive it out of villages. Besides, the elephants trekking to south Bengal forests have grown immune to the sound and fury of the drum beats and explosives.