Wayand tiger attack: Puthussery not even close to forest; natives terrified

Jesna Jinto

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Mananthavady: The Puthussery natives are in shock following the death of a farmer in a tiger attack on Thursday. Though tigers have been spotted in the residential areas in Wayanad before, Puthussery is several kilometres away from a forest and they can’t digest how the big cat reached there.

Thomas, a 50-year-old farmer succumbed on Thursday evening at a private hospital in Kalpetta after he suffered injuries from the attack of a stray tiger. He was on his field, engaged in agricultural activity, when the tiger jumped onto him.

The search for the animal has been intensified. It was first noted by MGNREGA workers by nine in the morning. The natives are angry at the forest officials who allegedly arrived at the place without proper equipment. Deputy collector and tehsildar are on the location to coordinate activities. It has been ordered to trap the tiger with a cage.

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The area has around 500 families and three tribal colonies. Locals are terrorised and restricted themselves to the houses. The area is an agricultural village that cultivates banana, pepper, coffee and tapioca.

In October last year, a tiger had caused fear among residents of Cheeral in Wayanad after it attacked several domestic animals. It took weeks for the forest department to trap it. Though Cheeral is close to forest, spotting tigers is a recent incident in the locality.

In November last year, a 46-year-old man was injured from a tiger attack in the Sabarimala forests in Pathanamthitta district.

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