Early on Thursday morning, Bhopal residents were greeted by an unlikely guest -- a male tiger who had wandered into the premises of the Central Institute of Agricultural Engineering at Nabibagh on Berasia road, barely 8 km from the city centre.
A curious crowd gathered at the spot and had to be dispersed by the police for safety. Later, the about four-year-old wild cat was tranquilised by the rescue squad of the forest department and safely taken to Van Vihar National Park.
As many as nine tigers are said to be living in the vicinity of Bhopal, with some even crossing into the municipal limits, especially on the Kerwa and Kaliasot side.
Conservator of forests (CF) Bhopal, AK Singh told HT that the police control room informed them about a tiger being sighted at the institute premises on Thursday morning. A team of forest department officials was despatched to the spot.
The rescue squad made the decision to tranquilise the tiger as there was no forest cover in vicinity to drive it back.
The rescue squad successfully located the tiger and was able to safely move it to Van Vihar National Park by 3 pm.
The tiger appears to have strayed into Nabibagh from the forests adjacent to Vidisha road in the early hours of Thursday. Sources said a male tiger was known to be living in the Amoni-Geedgarh-Samardha areas for a year and there was a strong likelihood it was the same tiger.
Forest department sources said a decision will be taken in a few days whether to shift the tiger to a reserve in Madhya Pradesh, most likely to the Satpura tiger reserve.