Leopard electrocuted in Khapa Forest Range

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 06 Feb 2018 09:38:31


Special Correspondent,

This is the first case of electrocution in Nagpur Forest Division this year

The first case of electrocution of a leopard has occurred this year in Khapa Forest Range when forestmen noticed a petrified body of the beast at a field near Tekadi village on Monday morning. Leopard is a Schedule I animal in the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972. Last year also, Khapa Forest Range in Nagpur Forest Division had registered the first case of electrocution of a tigress and two sambars in Maharkund, Tembhurdoh beat in Khapa range on January 13.

G Mallikarjuna, Deputy Conservator of Forest (Territorial), Nagpur, said that forester and forest guard on patrolling duty found carcass of the 4/5 years old leopard at the boundary of an agricultural field. The incident must have occurred three days ago and hence the body was in decomposed condition, he added.

One Jogi, who is engaged in agriculture activities in his farm and adjoining farm of the owner from Madhya Pradesh on contract basis, is suspected to have placed the live wire at the fencing.

It could be that Jogi, who hails from MP, used electric wire at the fencing in order to protect crops from damages being made by blue bulls and wild boars but unfortunately the leopard got entangled.

It is reliably learnt that the accused dragged the carcass about 500 metres away. R V Nimbekar, Range Forest Officer (Rescue), and his team reached the spot along with a sniffer dog. The dog helped the investigators to trace the exact spot where the leopard was electrocuted.

Mallikarjuna said a team of forestmen started searching for Jogi, who is absconding. It is likely that the team would arrest him shortly. Forestmen have registered preliminary offence report.

It is reported that Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (MSEDCL) would conduct enquirying into the matter on Tuesday and register FIR. Forestmen are conducting further investigation in the case.
Meanwhile, a team of veterinarians collected samples of the body for forensic analysis. All the body parts were intact, he added.

After conducting post-mortem, forestmen burnt the carcass by following norms of National Tiger Conservation Authority in presence of Vinayak Umale, Assistant Conservator of Forest, Kundan Hate, Honorary Wildlife Warden and representative of Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (Wildlife), Naik, Range Forest Officer, Khapa, and NGOs.