Dahiya village in Gosaiganj has been living in fear since Saturday after locals reportedly spotted a leopard on the prowl there.
Though the news about the presence of the wild animal kept them on tenterhooks for nearly 40 hours, forest officials on Sunday night declared that there was no wild beast in the area.
Forest teams reached the spot and tried to identify the pugmarks shown by the villagers. They also took the imprints for further investigation.
“Our teams went there twice but could not find the animal. Even the pugmarks shown by the villagers did not match with any big cat such as the tiger or the leopard,” said SC Yadav, divisional forest officer. In the mean time, villagers were still keeping vigil in the area.This is roughly after a year that fear of a wild animal has struck villagers on the outskirts of Lucknow.
In January 2012, a tiger entered the mango belt of nRehmankhera and wandered there for around 108 days. The 9-ft-long, 4-year-old male tiger was finally tranquilised and caged in April 2012.
Experts said such incidents were indicative of man-animal conflicts, as humans have cut trees in jungle areas leaving lesser space for animals.