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Diver, (Kupwara) Nov 6: Residents of this village in Lolab area of north Kashmir district are up in arms against wildlife department for failing to neutralise man-eater leopard who mauled an eight-year-old boy here.
Student of second standard, Zahid Mukhtar son of Mukhtar Ahmad Khan was caught by a leopard near his home Friday evening and taken away to a nearby forest where his body was found next morning by the family members and residents.
“Zahid’s body was found in a den and in a mutilated form,” said the locals.
Agitated over the incident, residents staged protests against the wildlife department.
When contacted wildlife warden North circle Rouf Ahmad, told Greater Kashmir that there was no protected area for wildlife in Kupwara district and people were living inside the forest areas.
“Immediately we can’t stop the attacks of wildlife animals on locals. We can only acquaint people not to venture into the forests,” he added.
“To trap the man eater leopards in Diver and Hafrada areas we have constituted special teams which are equipped with tranquillisers and traps. In this connection we are utilizing the services of local people. Our teams have surveyed the areas and monitoring their movement,” he added.
Chief Conservator Forests Kashmir, Shafat Ahmad told Greater Kashmir that to minimize the casualties of locals, the officials of forest department will coordinate with wildlife officials.