A Leopard has died after being shot by a police officer in the village of Aurangabad Khalsa near Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh, India, on Saturday 17 February 2018. Police had been aiding forestry officials in attempts to capture the animal, which had been living in unused concrete sewage pipes close to the village for at least two days, and which had injured several villagers in confrontations. The officer had reportedly tried to intervene where the Leopard attacked a local woman, and was forced to fire on it when it turned on him.
Leopard near the village of Aurangabad Khalsa in Uttar Pradesh before it was shot and killed this week. Indian Express.
Leopards are considered to be Vulnerable under the terms of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature's Red List of Threatened Species, with the Indian subspecies, Panthera pardus fusca, considered to be particularly vulnerable due to India's rapidly rising Human population, which has resulted in agriculture and other Human activities expanding into many former wilderness areas. For this reason the Indian Forest Service usually try to relocate Leopards that come into conflict with Humans to more remote areas, preferably within national parks, though the extent to which local people co-operate is variable.
Uttar Pradesh Police Officer
The Aurangabad Khalsa Leopard, an adult male, was originally trapped in a house by villagers who called the Forest Service to remove it. However the animal escaped before the forestry officials arrived, injuring at least one villager in the process. The Forest Service set baited traps in order to try to capture the Leopard and asked people to stay in their homes until the operation was over, but found their actions impaired by those of the villagers, many of whom attempted to see the animal, while others decided to take the matter in their own hands and drive it away, in contravention of the Indian Wildlife Protection Act. Confronted with these problems the forestry officials asked for help from local police to control the situation.
Follow Sciency Thoughts on Facebook.