A four-year-old male leopard that strayed into mustard fields near Malaka village of Tauru was captured by a team of forest and police officials after a four-hour effort on Wednesday.
The incident took place less than a month after a leopard was beaten to death by villagers of Mandawar after the animal strayed into residential areas a few kilometres west of Tauru -- 40 kms from Gurgaon.
According to forest department officials, one of the villagers, Tundal, spotted the animal in the field around 7 am. Tundal screamed in fear and the villagers alerted police and forest officials.
A police team from Tauru police station and a team of wildlife department with nets and a tranquilliser gun from Gurgaon rushed to the spot.
Officials said it is likely that the animal strayed from the Arravali forest.
Eyewitnesses said it took officials more than four hours to capture the animal. The animal was tranquillised and captured by afternoon after it climbed a tree.
“As soon as it (leopard) was spotted, the entire village panicked. Thankfully the officials caught it,” a villager said.
Police said the owner of the mustard field, accompanied by a group of villagers, resisted the capturing exercise as the leopard damaged his ripe crop. Police said they had to use force to disperse the crowd before the unconscious animal was moved to a cage and loaded in a vehicle.
“The leopard strayed from Aravali forests in Mewat. It was captured after being tranquillised,” Shyam Sunder, district forest officer (wildlife), said.