Karnataka

Child killed by leopard near Bengaluru

The child victim

The child victim   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

A three-year-old boy was killed by a leopard near Bengaluru in the early hours of Saturday.

The victim, C. Hemanth, was sleeping with his parents - Chandrasekhar and Mangalagowramma - outside his grandfather Chikkanna's residence at Kadaraiana Palya, the Magadi police told The Hindu.

The couple, residents of Dodderi, near Big Banyan Tree (Dodda Alada Mara), had been staying at Chikkanna's [Mangalagowramma's father] residence since past a few days following the outbreak of COVID-19 epidemic in Bengaluru.

Some of the family members, with the child, had slept outside the residence on Friday as the temperature was high. The feline might have taken the child between 1.30 a.m. and 4 a.m., and killed it on the outskirts of the village, said the sources.

After a frantic search, family members and villagers found the mutilated body of the child in the early hours. The leopard had left the partially devoured body on the outskirts of the village, added the sources.

According to the villagers, many felines have been prowling in the area, probably arriving from forests around Magadi and attached areas, for the last several weeks.

The Forest Department officials said that they have launched an exercise to trap the animal by placing cages with live baits.

According to preliminary investigations, the child was killed by a leopard. Pug marks were found near the body. A detailed investigation and post-mortem report will find the exact cause for the death.

Protest planned

The incident has sent shockwaves in the vicinity of the village. According to the sources, the people are planning to launch a protest to condemn the killing of the boy.

Compensation

Minister for Forest and Environment B.S. Anand Singh has announced a compensation of ₹7.5 lakh to the family of the victim.

Accompanied by Bengaluru Rural Lok Sabha member D.K. Suresh, Magadi legislator Manjunath and senior officials, Mr. Singh visited the place on Saturday morning.

Addressing mediapersons, he said that the department has decided to start combing operations for the leopard.

Mr. Suresh said the leopard might have come from Thippagondanahalli reservoir's catchment area on the outskirts of Bengaluru. The leopard has already tasted the blood of the child and hence the department should initiate immediate action [as the chances of the feline becoming a man-eater is high], Mr. Suresh added.

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Printable version | Jul 5, 2020 11:10:29 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/child-killed-by-leopard-near-bengaluru/article31542473.ece

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