Deputy Minister of Skills Development and Vocational Training Karunarathne Paranavithana stated that the only solution for wild Elephants issue is selling them to foreign countries. He expressed his ideas at a meeting yesterday (04) at Balangoda in Ratnapura District. “ According to the land area of the country, elephant population should be reduced to 4000. However, it is 6000 at the moment. The best way to control the elephant population is selling them overseas”, he further added.
“Pigs, Monkeys and Toque Macaques population of the country has increased significantly. Therefore, the growth of common animal population has to be controlled to protect rear fauna”, the deputy minister declared.
It is clear that the reason behind the wild elephant issue (widely known as an elephant-human conflict) is not the growing population of elephants but the elephant habitat has been severely fragmented by the so called development put in place by the successive governments. Due to the ill-planned development schemes thousands of acres of elephant habitat have been cleared continuously. Deputy Minister’s proposal reflects the incapability to solve the crisis by the present government including all the successive governments ruled the country throughout decades. According to the minister, it seems that the present government’s plans to manipulate the crisis to their advantage by selling elephants overseas as an income source instead of finding a long lasting solution to the crisis.