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A temple in the memory of three elephants, killed
A temple in the memory of three elephants, killed by a train, will be built in the village of Madukarai in southern India, local television said on Friday.

On January 4, in the early hours, a train hit three elephants - two males and a pregnant female - when the driver failed to notice the animals in thick fog. The female elephant gave birth to a stillborn calf before dying.

Locals believe the elephants put a curse on the village in revenge for their deaths.

"We were running scared all these days when the elephants raided our fields and ran very close to our homes, but we never wanted such an end to their lives," the Hindustan Times newspaper quoted a villager as saying.

In order to ward off the curse, villagers made a bronze statue of an elephant and plan to build a temple for it.

Clashes between man and elephants in the struggle for shrinking habitat are a common occurrence in India, where elephants often forced to live near villages and town as their natural habitat becomes eroded by man's activity.

Residents of the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu often resort to symbolic rites to ward off curses they believe have been placed on them.

Three months ago, a 34-year-old man married a dog to try and rid himself of a curse he believed had been placed upon him for killing two mating dogs. Soon after the incident, he became paralyzed, and a local soothsayer told him that the only way to remove it was to marry a dog.


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