A sub-adult leopardess that was suspected to be involved in attacks on nine humans at Aarey milk colony since August 31, has been trapped on Wednesday evening.
The leopardess - identified as C 32 which was escaping the trap cages set up by forest department for over a month walked into one of the traps set up at Unit 31 at Aarey milk colony.
The latest attacks have brought back focus on the human-leopard interaction in Mumbai and have put the forest department on its toes to quickly trap this leopard from Aarey, where tribals and leopards have been coexisting for decades.
The leopard has attacked nine people since August 31, including three children aged four, ten and 14. Apart from this in September She had attacked a 55-year-old woman sitting outside her home at the Visava Workers Colony on Wednesday while the latest attack was at Aarey Colony Unit 7. The very next day a 19-year-old boy, Rajesh Rawat, a resident of Santosh Nagar, Goregaon east, was attacked as he was returning home after dropping his friend. Rawat was rushed to the HBT Trauma Hospital at Jogeshwari.
The Maharashtra forest was under pressure from locals and politicians to trap the leopard since the spate of attacks began. In the process two different leopards ended up walking into the traps on three different occasion, while C 32, which was suspected to be involved in the attacks kept escaping the traps.
Confirming the development Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (Wildlife) Sunil Limaye said; " The leopardess that was identified for her involvement in series of attacks on humans was trapped on Wednesday evening. After this we are planning to release the other leopardess that was trapped the first time, the sibling of the one trapped now."
According to officials now that the one involved in attacks - C 32 has been trapped, they are planning to release C31 which was trapped the first time. "The one trapped the first time was kept in the nursery away from humans since the day she was trapped. We are exploring at possibilities to radio collar (C31) before releasing her. Even if it is not possible to radio collar, we will still release her since she was not involved in attacks," added Limaye.