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Leopard injures six in Nashik

A leopard strayed into Nashik city early on Monday morning and went on a mini-rampage, wounding six persons, including a schoolgirl.

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Leopard injures six in Nashik
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A leopard strayed into Nashik city early on Monday morning and went on a mini-rampage, wounding six persons, including a schoolgirl. The creature was finally tranquillised after a five-hour effort.

“That morning, the dogs in the area were barking frantically, and so I came out to see what was going on. I was shocked and scared to see a leopard on the road,” said a lady resident of Kranti Nagar, Panchvati, where the cat chose to go on the prowl.

A schoolgirl was the first of its victims. It pounced on her, but fortunately she escaped from its clutches. The leopard then entered a bungalow owned by a Sambhaji Shelar. It first attacked Shelar’s father, and when the son went to his rescue, the leopard turned on him, wounding him in the stomach and hand.

Sarika Shelar was in the kitchen at the time. Displaying a keen presence of mind, she locked the door; subsequently, when she was sure that the leopard had entered the bathroom adjacent to the kitchen, she locked the bathroom door.

By this time word had spread, and a large number of people gathered around the house. Even as forest department officials attempted to overcome the leopard, the police battled an over-enthusiastic crowd, many of whom offered help in trapping the cat.

Forest officer and dart specialist Sunil Wadekar blew shot three tranquillizing darts at the leopard, but it was only after the third dart that the huge cat fell unconscious. It was then trapped in a net and carried to the Nehru Botanical Garden, where he was treated medically. It will be released into the wild after due procedures are carried out.

“The cat is a five to five-and-a-half year old male. He is not a chipped leopard, and so we can say that he was trapped for the first time. He must have strayed into the city from along the river banks in Makhmalabad (covered with agricultural fields),” stated Wadekar.

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