GUWAHATI, India (Rueters) -- A herd of wild elephants driven berserk by country liquor trampled to death six people, among them four children, during a rampage in India's northeastern state of Assam, police said Tuesday.
The animals came out of the forest Sunday, attacking granaries and drinking country liquor stored by villagers in Tinsukia, about 340 miles east of Guwahati, Assam's biggest city.
""The elephants, after consuming huge quantity of country-made liquor, went berserk, killing six people on the spot," a police spokesman said.
Experts say hundreds of wild elephants in search of food regularly emerge from the forests of Assam to trample rice fields and destroy granaries.
Destruction of the animals' natural habitats and a growing elephant population are the main causes of the problem, they say.
"It has been noticed that elephants have developed a taste for rice beer and local liquor and they always look for it when they invade villages," Dinesh Choudhury, an elephant expert in Guwahati, told Reuters.