In another leopard attack in Chandrapur district,a 16-year-old girl was killed and her mother injured near Chorgaon village in the buffer zone of Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserve around 8 am Friday.
Nilima Katragem,a standard X student,and her mother Sindhutai had gone to the forest to collect mahua flowers when the attack happened. The injured woman told us it was a leopard, divisional forest officer Kalyan Kumar said.
Asked if this could be the same animal that killed two persons at Adegaon village about 4 km away Wednesday,he said: Nothing can be ruled out. Since we caught a leopard Thursday in the village close to where the animal killed the two,we believe it was the problem animal.
Back-to-back attacks by leopards and a tiger that have claimed six lives since March 24 in Chandrapur forests have generated a lot of anger with mobs foulmouthing forest officials,accusing them of catching a problem animal at one place and releasing it at another.
The mob threatened to burn me. I had gone to visit the injured mother at hospital. They tried to prevent panchnama seeking my presence, Kumar said.
He said traps had been laid to catch the animal and patrolling intensified in the area.
Kumar said,This is a mahua- and tendu-collection season. Man-animal conflict intensifies this time of the year.