Birdwatcher may not have heard charging elephant

WELL-REGARDED Colin Manvell

WELL-REGARDED Colin Manvell

Michelle Bates, WO2 Lloyd Gillingham, Noah, six, and Gunner Ryan Hancock
Pictures: Habibur Rahman

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Travelling alone on a three-week trek, Colin Manvell had left his Havant home 10 days ago.

He would visit India twice a year to pursue his interests in birdwatching and photography.

He was attacked near a lake which is a watering hole for wild elephants.

According to local forest wardens, Mr Manvell may not have heard the elephant approaching until it was too late.

Michael Isaacs, 62, from Warsash, who is secretary of Portsmouth and District Lawn Tennis Association, said: ‘I was distraught to hear he had died in such an horrific way.

‘I remember him asking people to speak up or direct their conversation towards one side because he had a problem with his hearing in one ear.

‘You had to make it clear you were speaking to him in committee meetings.

‘It’s a tragedy.’

The incident occurred just 100 yards from a site where a woman was killed by elephants in 2009.

Some 500 people are killed by elephant attacks every year worldwide.

Attacks are reportedly becoming more common as their territory is shrinking.

The creatures can weigh as much as six tons – about the same as three cars – and can run up to 30mph.

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