Mumbai: Leopards still roam freely in Uttan Gorai; see pics

Thane Forest Department has set around 12 cameras to spot the leopards on CCTV, Vasant from the Village of Adivasi pada, There are almost four leopards in this areas Vasant Said.

In Gorai-Manori Village people are living in fear of Leopards from past one month, In Pugmarks were also notices down the near the Area of Vairala Lake. leopards are spotted Daily from few Days. The Adivasi community especially, that steps out in the night to catch crabs, has approached the forest department, which has strangely given an assurance that leopards won’t harm them.

While there have been frequent sightings of a leopard in the Gorai-Manori belt for over a month, with no man-animal conflict incident, activist Godfrey Pimenta, in a letter, has alleged that despite this, the forest department has done very little to trap the animal.

On Sunday, Pimenta wrote to the Deputy Conservator of Forest, Thane (Territorial), Chief Conservator of Thane Forest Department, Chief Conservator of Forest Thane (wildlife), SGNP, Chief Minister, Deputy Chief Minister, Chief Secretary of Maharashtra, and the Environment Secretary.

Vasant, a villager from the Adivasi pada, said, “There are four leopards in this area and the forest department has set up around 12 cameras to spot them. Our community catches crabs during the night, as the catch during the day is not enough. Recently, some of them saw the leopards and got very scared.”

Vasant said they called the villagers for help and remained there until around 10-12 boys went and brought them back safely. “We even held a meeting with the Gorai police and the forest department, but they said they won’t harm humans and will only prey on small wild animals,” he said.

The villager added, “It’s getting very unsafe for villagers, the leopards are roaming in a four-km radius around our homes. Around a week ago, one of them was seen drinking water from a nearby lake.” He said the villagers put out a video and images on social media to make people aware of the situation. “We will have to gather all members of the village and request the forest department to bring a cage and catch them,” he said.

The forest department had earlier said that they are surprised by leopard sightings in this area, and there is a possibility that they travelled from the Sanjay Gandhi National park to Gorai.

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