After CCTV cameras captured footage of a young leopard crossing a street in Mulund (West) on Sunday morning, the forest department asked residents not to panic as the cats are known to frequent the area.
The footage showed a leopard crossing the street near a residential colony located along boundary of the Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP) around 2 am. Officials from the forest department said they had received a call from the residents after they saw the footage.
“If a leopard has been captured on camera, it doesn’t mean the animal needs to be captured. Residents just have to be a little careful and vigilant during such encounters,” said Sunil Limaye, chief conservator of forest, Thane forest range. “We have already put together a team that works towards creating awareness about living with leopards.”
Locals seemed relaxed about spotting the big cat in the area.
“There is no need for people to panic, as leopard movement happens during night and in the wee hours. All we need to do is be careful while driving or riding in the night,” said Vaibhav Waghmode, of Silver Oaks society, Mulund. “Leopards have been frequenting this area for years now. In 2012, a leopard had taken a dog from one of the complexes but there has been no untoward incident,” said Krishna Tiwari, Mulund resident and founder of Forest and Wildlife Conservation Society.