A leopard was shot dead in north Bengal after it injured four persons, including a forest officer, near Bagdogra airport late on Wednesday evening.
A senior forest official said the animal strayed out of the Gangarampur tea garden and reached a wooded area in the backyards of Rangapani cancer hospital. It mauled a man around 6.30pm.
The forest department then deployed three teams to capture the animal. But the big cat managed to injure range officer Sanjay Dutta and two others when the teams were trying to tranquillise it.
“The forest staff killed the leopard in self-defence,” said VK Yadav, chief wildlife warden of the state.
All four injured persons were shifted to hospitals. The leopard’s carcass was taken to the forest range office for a post mortem.
Man-animal conflict is common in and around the tea estates and forest of north Bengal where people are often attacked by leopards and other wild animals, including gaur and elephants. Several elephants have also died due to electrocution and train accidents in recent times.
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