Reported by Vishwanath Kumar
Kendrapara, Aug 31:
A 55-year-old woman was grievously injured after she was attacked by a salt-water crocodile just outside the Bhitarkanika National Park limits in Odisha’s Kendrapara district on Saturday.
The incident, yet another instance of the growing man-animal conflict in the area, occurred at Naladia village of Ostia gram panchayat under the Rajnagar police station limits.
The areas close to the Bhirakanika National Park are presently witnessing heightened man-croc conflict.
On Thursday, August 28, a woman Baula Pradhan went missing following a crocodile attack in Ajagarpatia village near the Park.
The latest croc attack took place on Saturday, when the victim Draupadi Pradhan, had gone to the bank of river Brahmani for a bath. The crocodile, which was lurking near the bathing ghat suddenly surfaced and dragged her into the water. However a group of women, who were there at the bathing ghat, raised alarm and managed to snatch her from the jaws of death, literally.
Draupadi, who sustained multiple injuries, has been admitted to the government-run Rajnagar Community Health Centre. She is, however, out of danger, hospital sources said.
The state forest department is bearing the cost of her treatment, said Divisional Forest Officer, Rajnagar Mangrove (wildlife) forest division, Kedar Kumar Swain.
Forest personnel say, people are inviting trouble and exposing themselves to croc attacks by venturing into reptile-infested water bodies.
“We have sounded an alert asking the villagers to keep a safe distance from water bodies that are identified as activity zones of the crocodiles. But the local people have been ignoring the warnings ”, rued a forest official.