A leopard which was spotted at Mailardevpally in Hyderabad last week is yet to be captured by officials of the Telangana Forest Department. However, they continue to track its movement with the leopard having been last spotted on Monday.
The animal was first spotted on May 14, when several videos surfaced on social media, which showed it sitting by the median on the road, presumably sick or injured.
As local authorities including a rescue team of the Nehru Zoological Park approached to capture it, the leopard escaped. Initially it was seen entering a private farm on the Shamshabad Road and drones were deployed to trace it. It has since been spotted twice in the forests adjoining Professor Jayashankar Telangana State Agriculture University.
The last sighting was around 11 pm on Monday when it was seen near a compound wall and authorities have set up camera traps to track the movement.
"It is moving in the forest areas in its natural habitat. So far, it has not ventured near residential areas of Rajendranagar and neither has there been any attack on cattle," Bheem Naik, Divisional Forest Officer, Ranga Reddy told TNM.
"We are tracking its movements and have set up around 20 cameras. We hope that it will gradually move out of the city to a larger forest area," he added.
While officials say that there is no threat of the animal, residents have been cautioned against moving out in the night. With the COVID-19 lockdown curfew from 9 pm to 5 am still in place, authorities say that no untoward incident will take place.
Just last week, another leopard that was caught in a snare in Telangana's Marriguda mandal in Nalgonda district was rescued by forest officials, but later died while being shifted to the Hyderabad zoo.
The team of doctors certified that the cause of death was due to internal haemorrhages, shock and asphyxia.
Visuals of that incident too, were widely circulated on social media, and showed a team of officials trying to capture the leopard, which in turn charged at them, injuring two men.