A tiger mauled a man to death in Telangana's Kumuram Bheem Asifabad district on Wednesday, forest officials said. Sidam Vignesh, 23, was attacked by the tiger on the outskirts of Digida village in Dahegaon mandal when he, along with his two friends, was going towards the forest with his cattle for grazing.
The tiger, which was reportedly hiding behind a cotton crop, lunged at Vignesh and dragged him into nearby bushes. The youngster's shocked friends rushed to the village and alerted people. The villagers began the search for the youth and found his badly mauled body some distance away.
Forest officials confirmed the incident. They, however, said an inquiry will be conducted to ascertain if the youngsters provoked the tiger leading to the attack.
An official said since the big cats in the forest are not under any stress and never harmed humans, they are trying to find the facts. Some youngsters are said to be taking photos and videos of the big cats to share them on social media. The forest officials said such actions irritate the animal.
Tiger spotting at various places in Asifabad districts during the last few months has created panic. Just last week, a tiger was sighted near Lodpalli and Kondapalli villages in Penchikalpet mandal, creating panic among villagers. The tiger was seen crossing a road and a motorist clicked a photograph and posted on social media.
Farmers in these villages are scared to go to their fields, especially during night time. They appealed to the forest officials to drive away the big cat.
Officials say tigers from Tadoba-Andheri Tiger Reserve in Maharashtra are migrating to Kaghaznagar and Asifabad forests for prey and owing to safety. They have advised people not to provoke the big cats to avoid confrontation with them. Villagers were also urged to avoid going deep into the forests.
The farmers have been advised not to install electrified fences to prevent wild boars damaging crops as this may prove fatal for the tigers.