Elephants are threatened globally by habitat loss, poaching and accelerating levels of human–elephant conflict. In the state of Odisha, east India, electrocution by domestic electric power lines is causing mortality of the Asian elephant Elephas maximus. We collated data on elephant mortality from such electrocution in the villages surrounding elephant habitat for a period of 12 years (2001–2012). During this period 118 elephants were killed in 91 incidences. Most deaths (73.68%) were a result of accidental contact with electric power lines whilst elephants were moving into agricultural areas for crop raiding. The increasing human population, poor electrical infrastructure and ivory poaching pose serious threats to the continued survival of these elephants. To reduce elephant mortality from electrocution and to ensure the long-term survival of this population of elephants we recommend strengthening of the electrical infrastructure, minimizing habitat destruction, increasing public awareness of the problem, and stronger law enforcement.