‘Paws or no paws, University of Hyderabad needs urgent campus maintenance’

The leopard, as reported by a security guard, was sighted in the North campus of the university near the library.

Published: 12th January 2019 06:28 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th January 2019 06:28 AM   |  A+A-

By Express News Service

HYDERABAD: The unconfirmed report of leopard movement on the sprawling campus of University of Hyderabad (UoH) has caused students to ‘tread lightly’ while venturing close to areas with thick vegetation at night. But that’s not all. It has has also raised the need for proper management of the campus by the university administration.

The leopard, as reported by a security guard, was sighted in the North campus of the university near the library. Students usually take up roads covered in thick vegetation along both its side while moving from the North to South campuses late at night.

After the university issued an alert Friday regarding the unconfirmed leopard movement, some students claimed to hear peculiar sounds of a wild animal in North campus. Forest department officials have opined that the university needs to get its act together on maintaining its campus.

Mismanaged forests

When contacted, the Chief Conservator of Forests of the Ranga Reddy circle, Sidhanand Kukrety said that although the presence of the leopard has not been confirmed, he would not be surprised if the wild animal has actually made it in owing to mismanagement.

“The university’s porous border already allows over 200-300 stray dogs to move freely on campus. We’ve been writing to the university to develop a conservation zone, but to no avail.”Stray dogs are soft targets for leopards that are in search of food. Moreover, the university also has a diverse fauna including spotted deers, wild boars, etc, in addition to several lakes, making it a perfect for any wild animal. Using GIS, the forest department had demarcated 500 acres in the university for locking down as a ‘conservation zone’ last year.

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