KAKINADA: Forest Officials have intensified efforts to capture a tiger roaming around villages under Prathipadu mandal in the Kakinada district of Andhra Pradesh which are under the grip of fear after a tiger strayed and attacked livestock over the past week.
Around 150 forest personnel led by District Forest Officer I K V Raju were making efforts to capture the animal who said that the animal might have strayed into the villages in search of prey and water, officials said. Officials from Visakhapatnam Zoo have also joined the operation and three cages have been set up to capture the elusive animal. Once the committee set up by the National Tiger Conservation Authority arrives we will capture the tiger, officials said. The tiger might have strayed from Odisha and it might return to the forest habitat very soon. Forest officials said the villages of Yeleswaram, Sankavaram, Rowthulapudi, Annavaram, Kotananduru, Prathipadu, Tuni, Jaggampeta, and Gokavaram in the foothills are connected with Addatheegala and other neighbouring forests.
The forest officials had installed CCTV cameras at 40 places to capture the movement of the tiger. On Sunday the tiger's movements were captured on CCTV cameras as it was seen roaming near Pothuluru. The forest officials have also found pug marks.
Officials have advised villagers against venturing into their agriculture fields till the strayed animal has been captured, or returned to the wild on its own. The tiger sightings were seen often at Udarada Metta and villagers were told not to venture out in the evening times there.
Prathipadu YSCRP MLA Parvatha Purnachandra Prasada visited the sites around the Udara Metta areas and conducted a meeting with forest officials about the situation. He also distributed Rs 2.20 lakh compensation given by the forest department to the farmers who lost their livestock. He requested villagers of Pothuluru, Sarabhavaram, and Ommangi not to venture out in the night till the tiger was captured.