Lioness was killed, but poaching ruled out
Times of India
The postmortem report of a lioness found dead in Gir two days ago stated that the big cat died due to severe injuries by a sharp weapon. The forest department has booked an offence under the Wildlife Protection Act 1972 and are further investigating.
District conservator of forests, Dhari, VJ Rana told TOI, "The lioness, aged around 10 years, was found dead on December 16 in the Rajasthali nes of Tulsishyam range of Gir forest in Dhari taluka of Amreli district."
The body was sent for postmortem to Sasan town in Gir. "The lion died due to severe injuries to the left thoracic (heart) part of the body with a sharp instrument like an axe," Rana said.
Sources said the wounds were so severe that two ribs of the lionesses body were broken. Ruling out the possibility of poaching, Rana said, "There is no doubt that it's an unnatural death. However, as the nails and skin of the animal were found intact, therefore, prima facie this does not look like an act of poaching."
A source in the forest department said officials are investigating the possibility that Maldharis of the area killed the big cat in self defence or to protect their domestic livestock. "It's a possibility that the killing may have occurred due to self defence or retaliation after domestic animals were killed," a source said.
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