A minor girl was killed in an attack by a leopard at Zamboor-Pattan village in Uri on May 22. Reports said the girl was grazing the cattle in a field when the incident occurred. This is the first such incident in Uri this year. Last year five children were killed in leopard attacks there.
Such tragic and shocking incidents create panic among the people. Reports of human-wildlife conflict keep on coming from time to time from different areas in Kashmir.
Only few months back two leopards were spotted at several places in the uptown Srinagar. Their presence led to panic among the residents. The officials of Wildlife Protection Department kept on visiting the affected areas and tried to trap the leopards if spotted at that time.
In all such situations sometimes they are able to trap and sometimes they have to wait for days and weeks without any success. Reports say that there is shortage of manpower in the department and that has to be taken care of.
More people should be recruited in the department and it is a requirement in view of the increasing incidents of the conflict. All efforts should be made to prevent human losses. The killing of six children in Uri since last year is very tragic. Such incidents should have been averted.
The Wildlife Protection Department keeps on issuing advisories to avoid the conflict. The people should strictly follow those. The children should not be allowed to go out alone in vulnerable areas. Increasing population of stray dogs in residential areas is also a problem.
This attracts leopards towards the residential areas. Residents should avoid throwing leftover food outside their houses. This increases the number of dogs in the areas and subsequently leopards also reach these places. Human interference in the natural habitats of wild animals is also said to be a cause for human-wildlife conflict.
Deforestation followed by construction of buildings and roads in the wild animals'' habitat disturbs them and they move towards residential areas putting human lives in danger.
Development is important but not at the cost of the life. The wildlife too has to be protected but efforts should be made that they remain confined to their habitats and are not disturbed.
The disturbances in their habitats lead to increase in human-wildlife conflict and subsequent loss of human lives.