The unnamed child, who is believed to be around 5, was sitting in his hut with his mother and siblings when the big cat approached, according to local authorities.
The woman, who was locally named Kiran Baiga, jumped up and chased the animal screaming, according to YP Singh, field director of Sanjay-Dubri National Park and Tiger Reserve in central Indian state of Madhya. Pradesh.
As in other national parks in India, Sanjay-Dubri has a core where most of the wildlife resides. It is surrounded by a buffer zone where some people live alongside wild animals.
Singh said the family lived in Badi Jhiriya village, which is in the buffer zone of the reserve, which is not fenced.
The boy suffered minor injuries but is now fully recovered, according to Singh.
“He wasn’t badly injured but the leopard’s teeth had sunk into him. He was admitted to the hospital and he’s doing perfectly well now, ”he said.
Although called a Tiger Reserve, the park is home to a wide range of animals, including 32 species of mammals, including leopards.
Singh said wildlife teams were monitoring the area, but added, “A leopard doesn’t care what the core or the buffer zone is, there is no fixed limit for them. ”
“These forests are monitored by the forest authorities, but it is not possible to follow every movement of wild animals. You can only follow animals with a collar, otherwise the animals move around freely, ”he said.