Leopard snatches 3-year-old child from mother, victim’s mutilated body found

A leopard in India attacked and killed a three-year-old child while she was with her parents.

The incident took place in the northern state of Uttarakhand on Saturday. According to local media reports, the child was walking with his parents in the yard of their home when the leopard jumped and ripped the girl from her mother.

The animal then ran towards the forest, whereupon the victim’s parents sounded the alarm and a search was carried out for the girl and the animal. Hours later, the girl’s mutilated body was recovered from the forest in Berinag in Pithoragarh district, Rajyasameeksha reported.

dr Sameer Sinha, chief forest conservator and chief game warden for the state, urged all division forest officials to step up surveillance of their areas amid the attack.

“As directed by the CM, officers immediately reached the deceased’s home. Officials also placed two cages there and gave some compensation to the deceased girl’s family members,” Sinha said, according to a New Indian spokesman.

It remains unclear if the leopard was responsible for other previous attacks in the area.

A similar incident occurred in August in the western state of Gujarat, where a leopard pulled an eight-month-old child from his mother’s lap. The woman was at her home in a village nursing her child when the animal attacked. The mother chased the leopard a little, but the big cat disappeared. A day later, the child’s mutilated body was found in the Nani Dungri forest area.

Conflicts between leopards and humans have increased in the state and other parts of the country. This has been attributed to more forest land being used for agriculture, bringing people into close contact with the animals in their natural habitat.

At least 37 people have reportedly been killed in the human-animal conflict since the beginning of this year. Also, 115 people were injured in various attacks by leopards, elephants, tigers, bears, snakes and wild boar in the state. Not only has the conflict resulted in increased human deaths, but many animals have been killed due to the threat they pose.

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