An elephant who killed an Indian woman later on went to her funeral for another attack, this time on the latter’s dead body.
According to The Times of India, the 68-year-old was about to get some water from a nearby village when a group of elephants showed up on the site. As she tried to escape from the herd, one of them went after her for a strike that eventually led to her death following numerous injuries.
Her funeral was scheduled for later in the day. During the preparation for her cremation, a group of elephants was again seen from the forest, which prompted the villagers to flee and leave her corpse behind.
One of the four-legged creatures approached it and threw it in the air, while the rest of the bunch proceeded to damage her home as well as three other houses. Thankfully, no one else was harmed.
In a Newsweek report, Duncan McNair—lawyer and founder of conservation charity Save The Asian Elephants—reminded the public that elephants can be "deadly dangerous, particularly when provoked or abused" even though they are generally seen as gentle animals.
For McNair, the incident at the funeral could be linked to the elephant's "extraordinary cognitive abilities."
"It's just possible that if [the elephant] was in proximity still at the time of the funeral, and that's not clear, that it will have recognized the remains. And it may have seen or smelled that and it may have associated that woman with some catastrophe to it or its herd. That is quite possible."
The woman’s funeral pushed through the morning after. “We were terrified after witnessing the elephant herd on Thursday evening. We had never had such a ferocious elephant bunch earlier,” one of the villagers told The Times of India.
Rabi Narayan Mohanty, the assistant conservator of forests, said they have “taken steps to provide compensation to the next of kin of the deceased.