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EIGHTEEN elephants are killed by lightning during storm in India 

EIGHTEEN elephants are killed by lightning during storm in India

  • Two groups of elephants were discovered dead in the north eastern area of India after a lightning storm
  • Investigators in the area looking into the animals’ deaths believe they were killed recently by lightning strike 
  • Other elephants in Assam  have died from poisoning, poachers, train-related accidents and electrocution
  • WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT 

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Nearly 20 elephants are believed to have been killed by lightning strikes, according to examiners looking into the animals’ deaths.

Forest officials in the north eastern area of India discovered the bodies of the group of 18 clustered together in two groups.

They suspect they died during a recent storm in the Nagaon district of Assam state.

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said in a statement that he was concerned about the deaths of such a ‘huge number of elephants’.

Nearly 20 elephants are believed to have been killed by lightning strikes, according to examiners looking into the animals’ deaths. Pictured: People stand near the dead elephants in the Nagaon district of Assam state on May 14

Forest officials in the north eastern area of India discovered the bodies of the group of 18 clustered together in two groups. Pictured: Villagers offer prayers to a dead wild elephant on May 14

Forest officials in the north eastern area of India discovered the bodies of the group of 18 clustered together in two groups. Pictured: Villagers offer prayers to a dead wild elephant on May 14

Forest officials suspect they died during a recent storm in the area. Pictured: A villager walks near two elephants suspected of dying during a lightening strike

Forest officials suspect they died during a recent storm in the area. Pictured: A villager walks near two elephants suspected of dying during a lightening strike

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said in a statement that he was concerned about the deaths of such a 'huge number of elephants'. Villagers lay flowers next to a dead wild elephant while offering prayers to the animal on May 14

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said in a statement that he was concerned about the deaths of such a ‘huge number of elephants’. Villagers lay flowers next to a dead wild elephant while offering prayers to the animal on May 14

Amit Sahay, from the state’s forest department, said: ‘Four elephant carcasses were found at one spot and 14 others at another spot.

‘The preliminary investigation revealed that the elephants could have been killed by lightning.

‘Top officials of the forest department and veterinary doctors have been rushed to the spot.’

Amit Sahay, from the state's forest department, said: 'Four elephant carcasses were found at one spot and 14 others at another spot'. Villagers were emotional after finding the large elephants collapsed in the forest

Amit Sahay, from the state’s forest department, said: ‘Four elephant carcasses were found at one spot and 14 others at another spot’. Villagers were emotional after finding the large elephants collapsed in the forest

Top officials of the forest department and veterinary doctors rushed to the scene. Pictured: A dead elephant is found collapsed after a suspected lightening strike

Top officials of the forest department and veterinary doctors rushed to the scene. Pictured: A dead elephant is found collapsed after a suspected lightening strike

Assam's Forest Minister Parimal Suklabaidya tweeted: 'Deeply pained by the death of 18 elephants last night due to massive thunderstorm under Kothiatoli Range in Nagaon'

Assam’s Forest Minister Parimal Suklabaidya tweeted: ‘Deeply pained by the death of 18 elephants last night due to massive thunderstorm under Kothiatoli Range in Nagaon’

India is home to nearly 30,000 elephants, around 60 per cent of the wild Asian elephant population

India is home to nearly 30,000 elephants, around 60 per cent of the wild Asian elephant population

Wild elephants in the state have previously been victims of poaching, train-related accidents, poisoning and even electrocution, according to local media

Wild elephants in the state have previously been victims of poaching, train-related accidents, poisoning and even electrocution, according to local media

EIGHTEEN elephants are killed by lightning during storm in India 

Assam’s Forest Minister Parimal Suklabaidya tweeted: ‘Deeply pained by the death of 18 elephants last night due to massive thunderstorm under Kothiatoli Range in Nagaon.’

India is home to nearly 30,000 elephants, around 60 per cent of the wild Asian elephant population.

Wild elephants in the state have previously been victims of poaching, train-related accidents, poisoning and even electrocution, according to local media.

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