The forest department has lodged a police complaint against seven villagers after a five-year-old male leopard was found dead in a field, earlier this month. During investigations, it was found that the leopard had died after getting stuck in a clutch wire noose created by local residents to save their crop from wild animals. The animal apparently got stuck in the noose, which tightened and choked it after it tried to free itself. The post-mortem report of the big cat is still awaited. The FIR has been registered against three identified persons and four unidentified ones under sections 9, 39, 51, and 52 of Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 at Vrindavan Kotwali police station on a complaint lodged by the forest department officials. Section officer of forest department Om Prakash Sharma, said that the leopard was found dead in a corner of an agricultural land and its hair were scattered and a noose created from clutch wire was also found from the spot with hair stuck on it. He said, “The villagers had planned to bury the leopard but could not do so as the news spread.” The body of the leopard was sent to IVRI Bareilly for an autopsy after preliminary examination. According to forest officials, they got a tip off and when they reached the field, they found the dead leopard. Superintendent of Police (city) M.P. Singh said that no arrest had been made so far in the case and investigations were underway.
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