A leopard was spotted strolling near the wall of a housing complex along the Jogeshwari-Vikhroli Link Road in Mumbai, triggering panic among the residents and others in the area, a forest official said on Sunday.
The big cat was captured on CCTV cameras installed at the residential society, located close to the Aarey forest. The footage has gone viral on social media.
“A leopard roaming next to our society is very scary and dangerous. It can lead to a conflict situation. We are coordinating with forest officials to address this issue,” said a resident of the society.
Forest staff are closely monitoring the situation followed by daily night patrolling in and around that area, the official said. Citizens should not panic and instead, contact the 1926 toll-free helpline of the forest department in case of leopard sighting, he said.
Mere sightings of leopards in suburban Mumbai, especially on the periphery of SGNP (Sanjay Gandhi National Park) or Aarey is not dangerous, said Pawan Sharma, founder and president of RAWW (Resqink Association for Wildlife Welfare).
He said wild animals often stray towards human habitats in search of easy prey due to their natural instincts.
“Citizens should avoid entering dark areas at night. They should keep their society well lit for clear visibility. Small children and pets should be accompanied with adults, while security guards should stay in their cabins and use torches at night,” said Mr Sharma, who is also the honorary wildlife warden with the forest department.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)