Suraj Singh, a 13-year-old resident of Nayapind-Khairatiya village, was killed by the big cat on Thursday evening at Kharatia village, under the Tikunia kotwali area, while forest authorities, the WWF, and the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) experts were working to find and capture the errant tiger in the Dudhwa buffer zone.
The big cat struck again on Thursday evening at Kharatia village, under the Tikunia kotwali area, and killed a 13-year-old boy named Suraj Singh, a resident of Nayapind-Khairatiya village, even as forest authorities, the WWF, and the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) experts tried to locate and trap the errant tiger in the Dudhwa buffer zone.
When the tiger attacked and murdered the youngster, he had gone to pasture cattle near the River Ghaghra. Locals raced to the scene after hearing his pitiful screams and recovered the body.
Villagers had received stern warnings from forest officials not to go near woodlands or onto the fields until the rogue tiger was found and captured.
Sanjay Kumar Pathak, the field director of the Dudhwa Tiger Reserve (DTR), stated that he was en route to the scene to assess the issue after receiving word that a tiger had killed another animal.
On June 18, the rogue tiger had already murdered 52-year-old local priest Mohan Das. It later attacked and murdered a cow and its calf close to Khairatiya village on June 20.
The UP chief wildlife warden had granted the forest officials’ request to tranquillize and capture the tiger out of concern that it would turn into a man-eater.
Along with forest officials, experts from the WWF and WTI were called in to help find the huge cat. While cages have been set up to capture the tiger, more than a dozen cameras have been installed in the area where he moves.
However, no matter what was done, nothing worked. The tiger was seen on CCTV on Wednesday visiting a cage, attacking the bait, but avoiding the trap.
In the meantime, the persistent human-animal conflict in the Dudhwa buffer zone’s Manjhra Purab forest area has raised major concerns.
Given that the location is close to the Dudhwa buffer zone and the Katarniaghat sanctuary forests, the forest officials are also faced with the issue of determining whether the same or different big cats were responsible for the casualties.
On Wednesday morning, a tiger attack in the village of Bharatpur claimed the life of a man, according to divisional forest officer (DFO) KWS Akash Deep Badhawan. Ghanshyam, a 57-year-old native of the village of Bharatpur, was named as the deceased.
The DFO ruled out the idea that the same tiger killed both individuals when questioned. According to the DFO, there are more than 20 tigers in the Katarniaghat forest range as a whole. Additionally, the Trans Geruwa region is around 25 kilometres away from Khairitiya. Therefore, he claimed, a tiger could not have travelled from Kharatiya to this location by swimming 15 kilometres via the Geruwa River’s 100-foot-deep waters.