UK & World News

  • 28 June 2014, 22:05

Tiger Drags Man Off Boat In Front Of Children

A tiger snatched a father from a boat and dragged him into the forest as his children looked on in India.

The Royal Bengal Tiger attacked Sushil Manjhi, 62, on his boat on a river in the Sundarbans region of eastern India.

Mr Manjhi had set off in the early morning to catch crabs in a small boat, along with his son Jyotish and daughter Molina.

The three rowed down the Datta river towards the Kholakhali forest but decided to turn back because of a peculiar smell.

Jyotish, 40, said they were paddling back away from the thick forest when his sister raised the alarm.

"Suddenly, my sister cried out: 'Dada, bagh (tiger)", Jyotish said.

"I was stunned, and my body froze. All I saw was a flash of yellow. It took me a moment to register the gruesome sight before me.

"My father was completely buried under the beast. I could only see his legs thrashing about. I shook off my numbness and grabbed a stick.

"Molina, too, took out a long cutter we use to clear foliage in the jungle. Together, we poked and battered the tiger, but it refused to give up."

The tiger jumped off the boat with Mr Manjhi in its jaws. Within seconds, it had dragged the body into the jungle.

Jyotish and Molina called other fishermen for help but no one dared to chase the tiger.

It is unlikely that the body will be recovered. This is the fourth recent incident of a fisherman being killed by a tiger in the Sundarbans.

Sundarbans Tiger Reserve field director Soumitra Dasgupta said fishing was prohibited in the forests where the attack took place.

The Sundarbans is one of the largest tidal mangrove forests in the world, with 60% falling in Bangladesh and the rest in Indian territory.

It is also one of the largest reserves for the Royal Bengal Tiger, of which there are only about 1900 left in India.

Their numbers have been steadily decreasing due to poaching and the existence of a very lucrative illegal trade of Tiger skins and body parts.

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