An Asiatic lioness was allegedly electrocuted by a farmer in his sugarcane field in Mathasuriya village along Gir Forest in Gujarat, department officials said on Wednesday.
“Postmortem of the lioness confirmed that she died of electrocution,” said District Conservator of Forest (Junagadh) Aradhana Sahu, adding no external injuries were found on the big cat whose carcass was found on Tuesday.
Officials suspect that the farmer Bhimbhai Bhagavan Zankant was behind the incident and they are conducting inquiry against him under the Wild Life Act. “He will be detained after inquiry”, they said.
The Asiatic lion, also known as the Indian lion, is a lion sub-species that exists as a single isolated population in India’s Gujarat State. It is listed as Endangered by IUCN based on the small population size.
According to Deputy Conservator of Forests (West Division), Gir Forest, K. Ramesh, this is second such incident from Giri Somnath district in last one month. A lion was also killed in a similar fashion by a farmer at Moti Monpuri village in Junagadh district.