Nawab Shafat Ali kills man-eater leopard in Maharashtra

Nawab Shafat Ali kills man-eater leopard in Maharashtra

HYDERABAD: Sharpshooter Nawab Shafat Ali accomplished yet another mission by killing a man-eater leopard.

The Hyderabadi sharpshooter was invited by the Chief Conservator of Forests of Maharashtra to take down the wild animal when he was on a mission to save villagers from rogue elephants in Bihar.

Speaking to Deccan Herald over phone on Monday, Shafat said that he had no option but to kill the feline in Varkheda village in Jalgaon district on Saturday as efforts by others turned futile.  "The leopard turned man-eater five months ago as it lost fear of humans. The state forest department sent 200 men, 30 shooters with tranquilliser guns in 40 vehicles, set up 20 cages   and spent  Rs 2 crore before calling me," the Nawab said.

Upon arrival with his son Asghar, Shafat realised that he did not have much time as the sugarcane and cotton fields were in full bloom making it difficult to trace the lurking man-eater. "It already killed seven people. The last victim was 7-year-old Kunal Prakash. So, I asked the government to let me lead the operation and a written order to kill. They gave (me) and I finished the work in 5 days flat," he said.

Shafat who runs an NGO Wildlife Tranquil Force said that he took the decision to shoot the Leopard with his .375 Magnum rifle as it was ready to attack a group of people on Saturday night. "We initially traced the leopard's day time resting area. I recognised that it is used to human flesh by its body language and killed it in single shot," he said.

Before  leaving  for his sanctuary in Tamil Nadu for the much-needed rest, Shafat warned Maharashtra forest department that a female feline with cubs in the same locality might  become  man-eater.

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