Royal Bengal Tigers killed four people in Dakope and Koira upazilas of Khulna district in three days since Saturday, much to the worry of bawalis (goalpata collectors) and fishermen in the Sundarbans.
Tigers are becoming more ferocious due to serious food crisis in the Sundarbans following its widespread damage by cyclones Sidr and Aila, said officials of Sundarbans Forest Division, adding that hungry tigers also enter human habitations in search of food.
Bawali Kabir Dhali, 45, son of Mohammod Ali Dhali of Kalabogi village under Dakope upazila, and fisherman Pir Ali Mallick, 40, son of Dabiruddin Mallick of Fakirabad village under Paikgachha upazila, went to the Sundarbans with permission from forest department a couple of days ago.
When Kabir was loading golpata in his boat at Atbayon canal of the Sundarbans at 9:00am on Monday, a Royal Bengal Tiger attacked him and dragged him into the deep forest from where his body was recovered after intensive search by forest guards. They also recovered the body of Pir Ali from a different place in the Sundarbans. A tiger attacked him from behind and dragged him into the deep forest when he was netting fish at a canal near Hadda forest office under Koira upazila of Khulna district.
At 4:00pm on Saturday, a Royal Bengal Tiger attacked Namita Mridha, 48, wife of Birendra Nath Mridha of Kalabogi village under Dakope upazila, when she was worshipping ‘fairy of the woods’ (nymph) on the bank of Kalabogi River in Dakope upazila, said Kartik Mandol, station officer of Kalabogi Forest Office.
Her body was recovered at 6:00pm on the same day from deep forest.
A Royal Bengal Tiger killed Asha Mandol, 60, wife of Nimai Mandol of Hadda village under Koira upazila, when she was fishing in a canal at Phultala in Koira upazila at 11:00am on Sunday, said Assistant Conservator of Forests Md Zahurul Huq.
Amid panic due to alarming rise in deaths by tigers, the number of bawalis and fishermen has decreased during this peak season of golpata collection in the Sundarbans.