After a woman was attacked by a wild elephant while staying in a tent in Wayanad‘s Meppadi forest region and died following the incident, it has been found that there were major security lapses.
The tenting services were provided by a private resort, which has been closed for the time being. Wayanad District Collector Adeela Abdulla has asked the Tahsildar to submit a report on the incident.
The incident happened on Saturday night. Shahana, 26, from Kannur was staying in a tent in the region while holidaying with her family. According to the police, the three members of the family came out of the tent when they heard the trumpeting sound of the elephant. While the two others managed to escape, Shahana died. It is unclear whether she was stamped to death or she had a cardiac arrest due to the sudden shock, as she had no major external injuries.
Collector Adeela Abdulla visited the resort on Sunday and stated that there were security lapses in the area where the tents were built.
“Police investigation is on. So further details will be known after that. It is risky for tourists to stay in these tents. These tents are so fragile and don’t follow any safety measures. Moreover, these areas witness debris fall. So tourism in such places should be done after taking the opinion of authorities and disaster management authorities, by prioritising safety,” the Collector told the media.
She also said that all the tents in the forest border regions will undergo a safety check from now on. She also said that the victim did not have any external injuries and that the exact cause of her death will be known only after the postmortem report comes.
The tents were inside the forest, a 45-minute off-road route by jeep. Many resorts in Wayanad provide tenting services at the edges of the forest. Some of them provide fencing around the tents to prevent wild animal attacks.