Mumbai: SEEPZ leopard returns, found sitting on wall

Updated: Dec 12, 2019, 09:41 IST | Ranjeet Jadhav | Mumbai

Forest dept has advised petrified staff in the area on what to do in case they find themselves face-to-face with wild cat

The leopard (circled) spotted sitting on the wall early Wednesday
The leopard (circled) spotted sitting on the wall early Wednesday

Two days after the leopard was spotted in the building at SEEPZ, the leopard was again seen on the premises in the wee hours of Wednesday by a security guard. While the people working there have expressed fear, the forest department has explained to the staff that the only way is to take precautions and keep stray dogs inside the premises because it appears the leopard is returning because of the dogs.

On Wednesday, the leopard was spotted sitting on a boundary wall that separates the building from the adjacent forested patch, which is part of the Mahakali Caves area. The security guard immediately informed the forest department and a team that was on night patrolling duty reached the spot and took a round of the premises. They also explained to the security guards the dos and don'ts when they spot a leopard.

Speaking to mid-day, a security guard from the building, who did not wished to be named, said, "The regular sighting of the leopard here is worrying us because there are many guards on night duty and we don't want anything to happen to them. Last night, one of the security guards was sitting inside the office when he spotted the leopard on the wall of the building."

There are around five-six stray dogs who roam inside the building compound and it appears that they are attracting the leopards. The forest department has asked the people in the building to make sure the dogs are kept indoors. Range Forest Officer of Mumbai Range Santosh Kank said, "A camera trap has been installed in the area to check the activity of leopard."

If you ever spot a leopard...

If you have to move out in the dark, ensure you have a companion with you. Carry a torch and a stick. Leopards never attack people who appear bigger in size. Never crouch, and even if you panic on spotting one, don't sit or squat. Take the support of something next to you and stay upright. Do not scream or throw anything at it. Don't stare at the leopard directly in the eye, but back away slowly.

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