The Deputy Commissioner of Islamabad has assured strict action against the owner of a leopard that went loose in a housing society, causing panic. The leopard was captured after six hours of chase.
The Office of the Deputy Commissioner Islamabad confirmed that the leopard was captured and handed over to the Islamabad Wildlife Management Board, while assuring action against the owner of the feline.
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“The leopard is captured and handed over to the wildlife team. Unfortunately three persons were injured who are being treated. All are stable. Action will be taken against its owner. The details are being traced with the help of DHA management,” Office of Deputy Commissioner Islamabad said.
The leopard is captured and handed over to the wildlife team. Unfortunately Three persons were injured who are being treated. All are stable.
Action will be taken against its owner. The details are being traced with the help of DHA management.
— Office of Deputy Commissioner Islamabad (@dcislamabad) February 16, 2023
Thursday, videos emerged on social media showing a leopard running around the housing society. It is being speculated that the broke free from its cage. The clips showed the leopard – also panicked – trying to flee the scene, but it ended up running into houses and scaling walls, causing a state of panic and fear.
What's happening at DHA #Islamabad #Rawalpindi – is this some circus or what? what if the leopard kills someone, who will be the responsible? pic.twitter.com/rH2K4dYKCE
— Shiraz Hassan (@ShirazHassan) February 16, 2023
The security management of the housing society called the Islamabad Wildlife Management Department (IWMD) to report that a leopard had bit a security guard on the back. Rescue 1122 was already on the ground but failed to cordon off the area as more and more people gathered to watch the leopard despite warnings to stay in doors.
After over six hours, the IWMD managed to capture the leopard by tranquilizing it first. Rina Saeed Khan, who heads the wildlife board, revealed that the leopard would be kept at the Rescue Centre, which used to be the Islamabad zoo.
The lone male common leopard captured from DHA was sedated and brought safely to IWMB’s rescue & rehab centre. The leopard is now awake & roaming inside it’s enclosure. There were NO fatalities. Everyone is safe and sound! @WildlifeBoard @ClimateChangePK pic.twitter.com/LHdGthjds5
— Rina S Khan Satti (@rinasaeed) February 16, 2023
Pertinent to mention that it is illegal to keep common leopards as pets and action would be taken if it was established that it had an owner.
Meanwhile, the whole episode had created a storm on social media. Netizens criticized the management for the way the whole situation was handled, ie chasing the leopard for over six hours. The feline itself was in panic due to the large crowds gathered around it and attacked three wildlife officials. Netizens also condemned what is being termed the “elite culture” where wild animals are kept as pets in residential areas.
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