With 45% elephant mortality allegedly caused due to unnatural reasons in Odisha, Wildlife Society of Orissa (WSO), an environmental pressure group, has demanded institution of an inquiry into recurring elephant deaths and fixing of accountability on negligent forest officers.In nine months since April 1 this year, as many as 67 elephants have died while 30 of these deaths have been found to be unnatural ones, says WSO analysis.“The elephant mortality data show that in about 45% of the cases, death was caused by unnatural reasons including about 20% due to poaching by weapons and electrocution. In about 28% of the cases, no prima facie reason for death could be ascertained some of which would certainly be due to unnatural reasons,” says the analysis.“It is also very disconcerting that in most unnatural deaths, the victims have been adult breeding male elephants. Odisha loses 18 to 20 of such elephants every year, threatening the health and sustainability of their population. Already 18 such adults have died in Odisha since April,” said Biswajit Mohanty, WSO secretary.Seeking action against State forest officers in a letter addressed to the director of Project Elephant, Mr. Mohanty, former member of National Biodiversity Board, charged, “Odisha has now become the elephant graveyard of India with deaths being reported almost every week. The State forest department has not been able to stop this despite crores of rupees spent on patrolling and protection.” “The main reason is lack of accountability as no senior officer is punished for negligence or lack of supervision. Only forest guards and foresters are suspended,” he pointed out.
Commonwealth Games plunged into deep trouble today after England admitted their participation is “on a knife-edge” while Scotland athletes delayed their departure to Delhi and Wales set a deadline of Wednesday evening for the organisers to certify all venues and Games Village are safe.A footbridge collapsed near the main venue of the Games yesterday, which injured more than a dozen people, and the desperate state of the Athletes’ Village — described by Commonwealth officials of some countries as “unfit for human habitation” — has cast major doubts over foreign athletes turning up in India.Should the Commonwealth Games be called off? To vote from your mobile, SMS
Share via Email Share on Twitter Share on Pinterest “I think it’s one of those nights you’ll remember,” said Coleman. “We’ve had one or two of those the last few years. In the first half, to be fair to Austria, they would be disappointed it was 0-0. We weren’t at our best, that’s for sure. But the second half was different; we were more aggressive, more offensive. That said, it needed something special to win the game and, of course, we got that from young Ben.“I think we need three wins still. If the Republic beat Serbia and we win our games it drags Serbia back into it. It’s been hard this campaign, it’s always felt like we’ve been playing catch-up, trying to claw our way back into it. We’re still chasing both of them. But now we need to take care of business. Tuesday will be just as tough for different reasons and we’ve got to be a lot better than we were in the first half tonight.”Five consecutive qualifying draws had led some to suggest that the Welsh were suffering a hangover from last year’s heroics at the European Championship. The truth is that Group D is a highly competitive one, with each of the four sides at the top of the group slugging it out from a relatively equal standing. Coleman was correct in his assessment that Austria dominated the opening half at the Cardiff City Stadium; a midfield with David Alaba at its heart can cause most nations serious difficulties. Wales 1-0 Austria: World Cup 2018 qualifier – as it happened Supported by two defensive midfielders, including the deft playmaking skills of the captain, Julian Baumgartlinger, Alaba was offered licence to dictate play and in the opening 45 minutes the Bayern Munich star was happy to oblige. His relationship with Marko Arnautovic was particularly fruitful, the West Ham man offering a constant option on the left and beating Chris Gunter on the outside at will.Wales’s back three were often forced into a five as they tried to plug the holes Alaba was finding. But desperate as it sometimes seemed, it was also just about effective and only once in the first half did the Austrians get behind the Welsh defence. A superlative through-ball from Baumgartlinger found Arnautovic but he blazed over with time and space to do much better. Wales, for their part, might have scored on the counter had Ben Davies’s touch not let him down after a Gareth Bale backheel set him free in the box.Coleman had seen enough at half-time and brought on Andy King for Jazz Richards, to mirror the Austrian formation. Aaron Ramsey was granted the Alaba role and embraced it with similar relish, forcing the play and seeing two well-struck efforts – one close up and one from range – turned away from goal as much by luck as judgment.While their performances have been consistent in this group, Wales’s results – losing the lead twice in Austria and doing the same with a late concession away to Serbia – have not always matched up and the effect on confidence was uncertain as the stalemate dragged on. But with 20 minutes to go Coleman made another aggressive move, taking off Sam Vokes and the lively Tom Lawrence for Hal Robson-Kanu and Woodburn. Topics Reuse this content It was the right call once again. Less than five minutes later a Bale cross was driven across the edge of the Austrian box. Both centre-backs had a go at clearing it, neither managing to, and the ball came to Woodburn, who last December became Liverpool’s youngest ever scorer in a League Cup tie against Leeds. With an obvious clarity of purpose he took a touch infield, turned square on goal and hammered the ball to Heinz Lindner’s right and into the corner of the net.The Cardiff crowd, which had maintained a boisterous atmosphere throughout the match, duly exploded. Coleman danced a jig down the line. Austria threatened to equalise only once, the Alaba-Arnautovic axis fashioning one more opportunity for the winger, but the West Ham man was denied by Ashley Williams, the captain turning the shot over the bar with his head. The dragon was roaring just as it did last summer and Moldova face a tricky proposition on Tuesday. Read more World Cup World Cup 2018 qualifiers The Observer Wales Ben Woodburn’s rise no surprise despite Klopp’s kid-gloves approach at Liverpool Share on Facebook Shane Duffy header not enough for Republic of Ireland to see off Georgia Austria Share on WhatsApp match reports Share on LinkedIn Read more Read more Share on Messenger It was one of those pure strikes, the ball slicing through the air as if aided by aerodynamic enhancement, the keeper diving merely to keep up appearances. There was no stopping Ben Woodburn’s first international goal, scored just five minutes after the 17-year-old had made his international debut. It was a timeless moment, a goal that makes you stand up in your seat and shake the person next to you to check what you saw definitely happened.That it also provided Wales with three crucial World Cup qualifying points only added to the enjoyment. Chris Coleman’s side face Moldova on Tuesday just two points behind the Republic of Ireland, knowing if they win their final three matches they will earn second place in Group D, at least.