A four-year-old boy died after being mauled to death by a leopard after he was snatched by the beast while playing in the courtyard at his uncle's home.
The boy was dragged off by the wild cat for more than 500 metres and taken into nearby woodland and killed, on Wednesday, July 6.
The youngster has been identified as Mehraz Azad Mir from Rajpora Rajwar in northern Kashmir, India.
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Eyewitnesses said that the leopard carried little Mehraz away in its mouth.
Aijaz Ahmed said: “We heard cries of the minor before the beast was chased by the locals.
"The leopard has dragged him into the woods for more than 500 metres. Following the incident, the locals are living in a constant state of fear.”
Locals gathered after hearing the rumble and ran towards the forest to save the tot from the leopard.
After a 20-minute search, they found the big cat in the bushes and carrying the child in its mouth half a mile away from where it had attacked.
Some residents managed to snatch the child from the predator and he was rushed to hospital in a critical condition at 8pm.
He was declared dead at the New Type Primary Health Centre in Zachaldara.
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Horrifying images show the deep cuts sustained to the child’s face and body.
Wildlife officials and authorities have already cautioned the locals to keep an eye on their wards.
The shocking news comes following a spate of incidents in India, with five children killed in the last five weeks.
Another leopard was shot dead yesterday at 11pm in the Bernate area of Uri, north Kashmir following the deaths of Amir Muneer, 13, Shahid Ahmad, 12, and Rutba Manzoor.
Last month, around 50 people from the wildlife department including local sharpshooters were constituted to neutralise the leopard.
Since 2007, at least 232 people have been killed and more than 2,810 have been left injured in leopard and bear attacks in the erstwhile Himalayan state.
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