Team Blitz India
KONNI: An elderly tribal man, who was considered killed in an elephant attack, returned to his family on January 6, a week after his relatives carried out his funeral rites.
Raman Babu, a 70-year-old resident of the Manjathodu tribal settlement in Konni, was presumed dead following a wild elephant attack. The mix-up occurred after authorities found an unidentified body along the Sabarimala pilgrimage route, between Ilavunkal and Nilakkal, on December 29, 2023.
Nilakkal police, relying on statements from Raman’s relatives, including his son, identified the deceased as the 70-year-old tribal man and conducted an inquest. The family also carried out the funeral rites the next day according to Adivasi (tribal) customs.
However, on January 6, Manu, a tribal forest watcher and a relative of Raman, spotted him alive in the Kottampara tribal colony. Raman had been walking towards the SNDP Junction when a team of Forest Department officials, including Manu, recognised him. Later, Raman’s daughter Sheeja, residing in the Kattathy colony, and his elder son Azhakan, living in Manneera, confirmed his identity.