Residents of Mahadevapura, Varakodu and Kempaiyyanahundi and surrounding villages heaved a sigh of relief as the herd of elephants that had created panic was finally driven back to the forest. The herd that would have come either from Gundlupet forest or the Omkar forest near Varuna was spotted entering the jungle by the forest officials late on Friday.
A team of Dasara elephants was summoned from Dubare camp in Kodagu to tackle the menace. The five elephants, including three tuskers, which were wandering near Varakodu and Kuppegala villages near Siddaramanahundi in Varuna constituency in the wee hours of Tuesday, were spotted at Kempaiyyanahundi on Friday noon. Using firecrackers, the forest department officials managed to prevent the elephants from entering the residential areas. Unable to find a way into the forest, the pachyderms entered a sugarcane field near Mahadevapura on Wednesday.
On Thursday, the herd had crossed Bannur Road and had reached T Narasipur Road. With the operation becoming difficult for the department personnel to handle, Dasara elephants took the lead and were able to successfully drive them back to the forest on the banks of Kabini river near Kaggalipura.