Kapan-3 of the capital was terrorized early Saturday morning (May 17, 2014) when the locality was invaded by a leopard. 51-year-old Devika Paneru was the first one to discover and get attacked by the animal resting in the field near a vegetable patch. She had screamed out and frightened the wild beast upon discovering when it attacked her in self-defense.
After attacking the woman, the leopard, which is thought to have come from nearby Shivapuri forest, injured two others – a policeman and a vet. Shivapuri forest is five to seven kilometers from Kapan-3.
The leopard managed to attack Paneru once again before fleeing. The woman, who received minor injuries to the face and hands, was taken to Om Hospital.
Speaking to Republica, inspector Rabindra Prasad Bhatta, chief of Metropolitan Police Range, Kapan said, “When we reached there, the whole village seemed terrorized and they encircled the house of Yuvraj Regmi, where the leopard had taken refuge.” Police had reached the locality shortly after the attack was reported at around 6.30 a.m.
Needless to say, the situation was very chaotic the locals being frightened of the leopard and vice versa.
Fearing further attacks by the leopard, police vacated the locals and onlookers from the vicinity of Regmi´s house and picketed the area for several hours until a team of vets arrived from the district forest office around 10:30 a.m.
The team led by senior vet at Central Zoo, Radha Krishna Gharti, tried to tranquilize the leopard and capture it, but in vain.
The terrified beast again became aggressive and jumped on Gharti, who was not as lucky as Paneru. The animal left deep wounds in his face, legs and hands. Policeman Mukesh Kunwar also received minor injuries while trying to protect Gharti, who is now undergoing treatment at Patan Hospital.
According to family members, Gharti has received deep injuries and will have to remain in hospital at least for a week.
“The animal had really gone wild and it had now come out of the house where it was hiding. So we had to shoot it dead to protect the locals,” said Bhatta. They had to fire five shots to kill the animal.
After the shooting, police handed the carcass over to Kathmandu District Forest Office.
A similar incident involving a leopard had occurred at Gothatar VDC Last year. After the animal injured over a dozen locals, they killed the animal.
Lately, there have been many incidents of leopards coming out of their habitat and into human settlements. Human encroachment of natural habitats is thought to have been the cause.