Giant crocodile kills 17-year-old girl grazing goats; The victim’s mutilated body was found 2 days later

A giant crocodile attacked and killed a 17-year-old girl while she was grazing goats in a riverside village in India.

Authorities said on Saturday the incident happened near Bhitarkanika National Park in the eastern state of Odisha on Friday.

The teenager – identified as Sheela Dalei – was with her older sister Sumitra near a creek when the incident happened. One of the goats had entered the creek, whereupon Sheela went to bring the animal back. Suddenly, a saltwater crocodile pounced on the girl and dragged her into the water.

“We were grazing our goats when suddenly one of the herd entered the creek. As soon as Sila approached him to bring the goat back, a crocodile appeared out of nowhere and dragged my sister into the water,” Sumitra said, recalling the harrowing incident. according to the New Indian Express.

The Manas Dash National Park range officer said forest personnel began searching for the victim immediately after being notified of the incident. The victim’s mutilated body was found after a two-day search, Times Now reported, citing the Press Trust of India.

“We always warn riverside villagers not to venture into the rivers and streams around Bhitarkanika as they are home to around 1,784 crocodiles. The State Forest and Wildlife Service has also barricaded 75 river ghats around the park and its surrounding areas,” Dash reportedly said.

He also said the Forest Service will pay the victim’s family nearly $4,800 in compensation.

The latest incident marks the fifth deadly crocodile attack in the area in the past four months. Villages along Bhitarkanika National Park have experienced several incidents of human-crocodile conflict. At least seven others have been injured in crocodile attacks over the past four months.

Authorities said most attacks occur when people enter crocodile habitat to illegally fish, poach, graze livestock, gather firewood and collect honey. Incidents become more frequent during the monsoon and winter months.

In July, a giant crocodile swallowed a 10-year-old child while the boy was bathing in a river in India. The incident took place in the Chambal River, which flows through the state of Madhya Pradesh. The boy was going deep into the river while bathing when the 8ft long crocodile emerged from the water and dragged the child away. Later, the locals used sticks, ropes and nets to catch the crocodile.

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