A two-year-old toddler was reportedly mauled to death by a leopard while she was sleeping at her family's home in Bhandariya village of Gujarat, India on Sunday, July 11, forest department officials confirmed.

The toddler girl, identified as 2-years-old Daya Madhasukhiya, was attacked by a leopard while she was peacefully sleeping in her home, Dushyant Vasavada, Chief Conservator of Forests at Junagadh Wildlife Circle said. The area of the leopard attack falls under the Palitana range of the Shentrunji Wildlife Division of the Gir Wildlife Circle, the Times of India reported.

“The girl and her parents were asleep in their home on the outskirts of the village when a leopard entered the house and dragged her away," Nisha Raj, Deputy Conservator of Forests (DCF) of Shentruji division told The Indian Express in an interview. "However, we got two versions of the incident. In the first, her parents came to know of the incident very late. According to the second, the mother saw the leopard taking away the child but couldn’t shout due to fright. Her remains were found around 500 meters away from her home.”

Raj added that the forest department officials were informed about the incident at around 5 am Sunday, July 11.

The heartbreaking incident comes just a day after a leopard similarly attacked and injured two women, Sangita Thakar, 30, and Nayna Mal, 35, in Garal village of Dhari Taluka of Amreli district, Gujarat, on Saturday, July 10.

The two women were reportedly surprised by the leopard while they were sleeping outside a cottage on an agricultural field. The injured women were immediately rushed to a hospital in Amreli. Thakar, who had sustained minor injuries, was given primary treatment and discharged. Meanwhile, Mal had suffered serious injuries to her neck from the leopard's attack and was referred to Rajkot hospital for further treatment.

“We have placed four trap cages at the place to rescue the leopard with no success so far,” said Anshuman Sharma, DCF of the Gir (east) Wildlife Division.

Conflicts between the locals and the animals are common in the forest areas of Gujarat. According to reports presented by the government in the state assembly in March, approximately 718 people have been attacked and 67 have been killed by leopards in different parts of Gujarat between 2015 and 2019.

Representational image. Pixabay

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