A seven-year-old tribal girl died in a suspected leopard attack at Wadi village in Surat district on Wednesday morning. This is the second incident of a leopard attack on a minor in the village in 15 days. Wadi is the native village of state Cabinet Minister for Forest and Tourism Ganpat Vasawa.
As per details, Nitika (7), the daughter of a tribal farm labourer, along with two other girls went to answer nature’s call behind her home in the morning, when they were attacked by a leopard hiding in the bush.
According to two girls who survived the attack, the leopard dragged Nitika by her neck to nearby agriculture fields. Hearing cries for help, the girl’s father Rajesh Vasawa and other villagers rushed to the spot and started search for the leopard and Nitika.
The girl was found 80 m from the spot and rushed to a doctor who declared her brought dead. Leopard, according to villagers, fled after being chased.
Ganpat Vasawa, who was in the village for Diwali vacations, also reached to the spot and instructed forest officials to catch the leopard as early as possible.
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“We have visited the victim’s house and pacified the family members. Compensation has also been promised to the family members,” said the minister. Village sarpanch Bhupendra Vasawa said, “This is the second such incident in the last 15 days in our village… We have made different groups and even night vigil has been arranged in the village.”
According to Deputy Conservator of Forest (DCF), Surat range, said, “We had laid a trap and rescued a leopard who was then taken into the forest. This leopard appears to have come from Netrang forest as the village is located on the border of Surat and Bharuch districts,” he said, adding that five traps have been laid in and around the area to catch the big cat.