Authorities Mulling Action Against Wildlife Field Staff for ‘Failing to Save Animal’

Kupwara, Oct 20: Nearly eighteen hours after being found stuck inside a 20-feet-deep well, the black bear was on Wednesday morning retrieved dead by the local inhabitants in Kumar Mohalla locality in Wani Dorusa of Lolab.

Locals told GNS that they went to see the animal this morning only to find it motionless. As more residents poured in, the animal was retrieved from the well later on and found dead, they said.

The wild animal, as reported, had got trapped in the well, apparently while crossing over makeshift covering of the water source.

The incident has raised a question mark on the Wildlife Department, who are being alleged to have ‘failed to save the animal despite being informed on time’.

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It may be recalled that a Wildlife Department official had said that a team was on way to rescue the animal, even as saying, the chances of retrieving the bear alive were very high as they have dealt with such cases in the past as well.

A local, on condition of anonymity, told GNS that it was sheer failure of the Wildlife Department. “They were informed on time about it however they did nothing to save the poor animal leading to its tragic death”, the local said.

When contacted, Wildlife Ranger Nissar Ahmad Rawa told GNS that “prima facie there has been careless approach from the field staff adding action as warranted would be taken against the erring employees”, Rawa said.

Chief Wildlife Warden Suresh Gupta told GNS that the matter will be looked into. “This shouldn’t have happened, it is totally wrong”, Gupta said adding they (staff) could have taken help from civilians or Forest Protest Protection to save the animal. “If it is proved that the staff has been found careless in any way, necessary action will be taken”, Gupta said.

Meanwhile SDM Lolab Aijaz Ahmad has said that the matter is being looked into. “The matter is under consideration however it apparently seems that the Wildlife Department employees have been lackadaisical in their approach in saving the life of the animal”, he said.