Monday, January 19, 2009

Lions kill man at jungle show


Lions kill man at jungle show

Times of India


Spectator Mauled To Death At Gir 'Illegal' Event


Ahmedabad: A group of lions attacked and killed a 35-yearold man in the reserved forest area of Gir in Gujarat's Junagadh district.


How the victim Mukesh Parmar and three of his friends, who were reportedly watching an illegal lion show, came so close to the beasts is a mystery. The spot where the mishap took place, Babra Virdi area, is known for illegal lion shows where a bait is dragged by a vehicle and the spectators pay to watch the lions chasing it.


According to the official version, the incident happened between 2.45 pm and 3 pm on Friday when a group of four bikers was attacked by the lions. Farmers working in the nearby fields told forest officials that three in the group ran away as soon as the lion attacked Parmar. The mood of the hungry lions was apparent from the fact that two cows had been killed between Thursday night and Friday morning in the same area.


Forest officials say the attack on Parmar raised suspicion as to why the group had gone so close to the beast. Locals said although this particular road saw heavy traffic, Parmar and his friends were attacked in the dense jungle. In April last year, TOI had reported how lion shows were hosted for foreign clients by paying fees between Rs 2,500 and Rs 10,000.


Additional principal chief conservator of forest Pradeep Khana confirmed the incident and said a probe would reveal if the victim was part of something illegal. Parmar's brother, Kishan, told TOI over the phone that his brother was headed to buy ghee for his bakery. He lost his way while returning and landed in the lion's den, he said, denying that his brother had gone for a lion show.

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