The man-animal conflict in Chandrapur district seems to have started again. After tigers claimed two human lives during last week, a leopard wreaked havoc on Wednesday in three villages of Brahmapuri division injuring five persons.
“A leopard was seen on the outskirts of Khedmakka village in the wee hours of August 19. It attacked two persons who had gone to answer nature’s call,” said SL Thavre, divisional forest officer, Brahmapuri.
As soon as the information reached forest officials, frantic efforts to track the animal were initiated. Even before officials could trace the animal, information about attacks started coming in from adjoining Kahali and Khandala villages. The villages are located around 2 km from each other.
The situation became grave as many people would go to fields. “Anticipating increased attacks, we appealed to people to remain indoors and not to venture out. After much efforts, we traced the leopard in a paddy field between Khedmakka and Kahali villages,” said Thavre. The efforts to trap the animal can be started after dusk when the animal will be active and public movement in the area would stop, he added.
Earlier, tigers had claimed two human lives in Chandrapur district during last week. Both the incidents took place inside the reserved forest adjoining Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve (TATR).
In the first incident, Shrihari Magre, 20, a resident of village Katwal, was killed by a tiger when he had gone to forest on August 11, while in the second incident, body of a shepherd Namdeo Ramchandra Chauke, 35, a resident of village Tekepar in Chimur taluka of Chandrapur district, was found in survey number 35 of Bamangaon Reserved Forest in TATR on August 15.
According to sources, the body was eaten below waist and body parts were found scattered over an area of 1.5 km. A full grown male tiger had attacked Magre when he went to the forest for cattle grazing on August 14. When he did not return to the village till late evening, villagers started searching for him on August 15 morning only to find pieces of Magre’s body. The tiger, having a stride of 152 cm, is likely to be around 12-ft long.