Updated: September 2, 2019 5:03:50 am
AN ELDERLY farmer was injured after being attacked by a leopard on Sunday, while he was asleep on his farm in Nesda village of Una taluka of Gir Somnath district. Forest officials said the area falls in Gir (east) forest division and that efforts to cage the carnivore were on.
“The person was injured by the leopard on his agricultural farmland at 4 am. He sustained minor injuries on his head,” Dushyant Vasavadas, Chief Conservator of Forests, Junagadh Wildlife Circle, said.
The victim was identified as Hamir Chauhan (65). Forest officials said that the farmer was asleep in the ‘osari’, the living space in a traditional Gujarati rural home. “The leopard pounced on the farmer and inflicted nail injuries on the elderly man’s head. However, the farmer raised an alarm and the animal escaped. He was rushed to a government hospital in Una town,” said J G Pandya, Range Forest Officer (RFO) of Jasadhar, Gir (east) forest division.
Pandya further said that Chauhan was discharged from the hospital later in the day, after doctors took four stitches to sew together gashes left by the leopard’s paw. “The injuries were not very serious and therefore, the farmer has been discharged from the hospital. We have placed two trap cages near the spot where the incident took place, to rescue the leopard which attacked the farmer,” said the RFO.
Gir forest and other protected areas — spread across Junagadh, Gir Somnath, Amreli and Bhavnagar districts of Saurashtra region in Gujarat — are the only natural habitat of Asiatic lions in the world. The highly protected forest is also home to one of the densest populations of leopards in the state, and cases of the big cats attacking humans on the periphery of the forest are recorded occasionally.
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