Our Request to Mirzapur Forest Department regarding Ethical Capture of Leopard
Date: Wed, Jun 1, 2016 at 9:35 AM
Subject: Reg. the irresponsible capture of leopard by Forest Dept Mirzapur
It gives me enormous pain to write this email. But seeing the plight of the situation where the forest department staff who is expected to be the most responsible and sensitive to the wildlife of the region has failed to show their commitment towards protection of the wildlife. I am talking about the leopard which is trapped inside a house in Chunar, Mirzapur since yesterday.
If the exit and surrounding areas were vacated of people, the leopard could have make its way out and go back to its own habitation. Instead of clearing the area of crowd and let the leopard escape securely from the house, your forest department staff kept torturing the animal even during night time with flash-lights and with help of local people obstructed the door of the house. This did not stop here and an attempt was made to trap the leopard inside a fishing net which it tore off and made it more scared of human beings. In all these process since yesterday, the leopard may have got some serious injuries till now, for which there must have been a veterinary team and ambulance ready. Unfortunately, except few ground staff of forest department, no one was present there. Obviously, these practices are highly unethical, unscientific and will bring immense stress to the animal and is very dangerous for future of the wildlife in district.
Such an arbitrary exercise of capturing of the leopard without any scientific consultation is bound to increase the problem of man-leopard conflict in the area. The leopard is being tortured to an extreme level since yesterday, and the same continues even today. I would only request that please avoid any physical contact with the animal for now as it is already under immense stress. In inescapable scenario, the leopard may be captured using tranquilizer as it is in confined space. Radio-monitoring of the leopard is must if it is captured by your team and released in wild.
Please find attached the ‘Guidelines for Human-Leopard Conflict Management’, Ministry of Environment and Forests, 2011 for detailed procedure to be followed.
I hope, you will acknowledge a receipt of this email and also update us with further information regarding the safety of the leopard.
Thanks and Regards,
Vindhyan Ecology and Natural History Foundation
Vindhya Bachao Secretariat,
36/30, Shivpuri Colony, Station Road, Mirzapur