Pithoragarh, November 15
A woman was killed by a leopard in the Lamgara area of Almora district on Divali night despite claims of the Forest Department of freeing the area of man eaters. Kamal Devi of Dhankhoi village in the Lamgara block was killed by a leopard on Divali night when she had gone to collect fodder for her cattle in a nearby forest, said MK Bahukhandi, a forest officer of Almora district.
The officer added that after the incident the department had sought permission from the higher authorities to declare the leopard as man eater so that it could be eliminated.
It is the fourth killing by a leopard in the Lamgara area of the Almora district in a month and second after the area was declared safe from man eaters, said Devendra Singh, former pramukh of the Lamgara block.
According to Forest Department sources, this was the fourth killing by a leopard in the Lamgara block alone. Earlier, women were killed by leopards in Huna, Chaunai and Silkhora villages, said the forest officer.
The Forest Department has devised a strategy of camouflaging shooters as women cutting grass as the leopard is attacking women only. “We have now charted a special plan under which the Forest Department hunters will be posted at sensitive places in the attire of women. We are awaiting permission from the higher forest authorities to declare the leopard as man eater,” said the forest officer.