Bahraich, Uttar Pradesh:
The mother leopard, around 4-5 years old, was caught on Tuesday (Representational)
The forest department has captured a female leopard and a cub that were responsible for five deaths in the Nanpara forest range area in the past four months, officials said.
Two children were also injured in an attack by them, posing a persistent problem for the locals in the area, they said.
While the leopard was caught on Tuesday in Loniyanpurwa village, the cub was caught on Saturday. There were unconfirmed reports of another cub which may still be at large, officials said.
Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) and commander of the special leopard rescue operation Akashdeep Badhawan said that a female leopard was sighted roaming with one or two of her cubs in Khairighat and surrounding areas of Nanpara Forest Range.
Mr Badhawan said they had claimed five lives in the area since August 5 and had injured two children in an attack.
Continuous efforts were being made by the forest department for the past four months to catch the leopards, the DFO said.
He said that trapping cages were installed in the affected areas and the number of thermo sensor cameras was also increased. The forest was combed by trained elephants and drone cameras were also used for it, Badhawan added.
On November 25, a leopard cub aged about 10-12 months was captured in a cage installed by the forest department, he said. The mother leopard, around 4-5 years old, was caught on Tuesday, the official said.
Both have been trapped and caught in Loniyanpurwa village near Nanpara Range of Bahraich Forest Division and Motipur Range of Katarniaghat Wildlife Division, he said.
Mr Badhawan said it is yet to be confirmed whether another cub exists. If there is another cub then it must be somewhere nearby and will be caught soon," he said.
The DFO said the captured leopards were found to be healthy in a health checkup. It has been recommended to send them to a zoo after permission from higher officials, he added.
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