It is not just tigers that are being sighted in Bhopal these days.
On Tuesday, a large crocodile was sighted in Bhopal near Bhadbhada Gate, which was later caught in a rescue operation by a team of wildlife officials, unlike the Tiger T1 which remains untraceable.
It is rare for any state capital where tigers and crocodiles are being spotted inside the city limits.
Director, Van Vihar National Park, Bhopal, Dr Atul Kumar Srivastava said that they received information about the crocodile near the Bhadbhada Gate shutter, following which a team of 11 officials left reached the spot and succeeded in catching the crocodile.
“It was brought to Van Vihar and where veterinary doctors conducted its medical examination,” he said.
The crocodile was found to be healthy and was shifted to the crocodile park in Van Vihar. “We have eight crocodiles in Van Vihar. With this addition, we have now nine,” he said.
He said that this was the first time in the recent past that a crocodile had been caught in Bhopal. “Some of our officials and fishermen have reported sightings of crocodiles and alligators in the waters of Upper lake, especially near the Sair Sapata area,” he said.
This is not the first time a crocodile or an alligator has been spotted in water bodies in and around Bhopal. There have been past reports of crocodile sightings in the Upper Lake and Kaliasot dam. Some people have even been killed in crocodile attacks.
In June 2011, 17-year-old Sanjay Singh was killed by a crocodile while he was swimming with friends in a pond at Ratibad village near Bhopal.
In October 2012, a crocodile devoured a cow at a culvert near Sakshi Dhaba on Kerwa dam road, while in September last year, a 46-year-old man was attacked by a crocodile at Bhopal’s Kaliasot dam and sustained injuries in his left leg.
The Van Vihar National Park in Bhopal houses crocodiles and alligators. Some observers claim that some alligators or crocodiles might have sneaked into the Upper Lake during the monsoon period, when the water level in the lake swells.