‘Wild animal’ spotted in Gosainganj village, foresters launch rescue op
Other villagers gathered at the spot and tried nabbing the animal, but moving swiftly, it entered a nearby pipe of roughly 3 feet diameter.lucknow Updated: Mar 20, 2018 13:27 IST
Panic gripped village Mulakheda in Gosainganj on Monday morning after a wild animal, suspected to be a leopard, was found roaming in the area.
The beast was first spotted at about 8.30am by a labour who raised an alarm. Other villagers gathered at the spot and tried nabbing the animal, but moving swiftly, it entered a nearby pipe of roughly 3 feet diameter.
The residents immediately informed the police and the forest department, and by afternoon, a rescue operation was mounted.
However, till the late evening, the animal was still to be captured.
“We are trying to rescue it,” said divisional forest officer Manoj Sonkar, adding: “Right now, we are not sure which animal it is.” Inside the darkened pipe, only the animal’s eyes could be seen, making it difficult for forest officials to comment on the species.
Villagers said the animal did not come out after entering the pipe, which is blocked at one end and has the forest department’s cage and net installed at the other.
The foresters attempted to force the animal to enter the cage by bursting firecrackers, however, their efforts proved futile.
A few villagers conjectured that the animal could have been present in the area for as many as two days, as some of their livestock out grazing the fields had not returned. “They might have been killed by the animal,” said a villager.
Villagers also said that a tiger had entered the area in 2008 but was chased away by bursting firecrackers.
Meanwhile, as the news of a wild animal’s presence in the area spread, people from nearby villages also started arriving in droves. Police had to chase them away to keep the area clear for the rescue operation.
Earlier, in February, when a leopard was sighted in Lucknow’s Ashiana locality, large crowds of onlookers had created difficulties in executing the rescue operation. Later, the leopard was shot dead without permission, leading to strong objections from forest officials and wildlife lovers alike. A probe in the matter is still going on.
Before that, a leopard that had entered a school in Thakurganj area was rescued successfully.