Bengaluru: A leopard entered a private school near Varthur and attacked people, injuring three forest department personnel, including a veterinarian, officials said.
The feline has been tranquilised after a day long operation, and the three injured persons, including a veterinarian, have been shifted to a nearby hospital, they said. It attacked a man trying to escape by climbing a gate.
As he tried to ward it off, forest officials fired shots and the animal escaped. The feline was first spotted by CCTV cameras inside Vibgyor School at around 4.13 am.
The school was shut as it was Sunday. School authorities immediately informed forest officials and police who rushed to the spot. "The leopard seems to have strayed into the city late Saturday from a nearby forest area in search of prey and jumped into the school premises over a compound wall," Ralph, who rushed to the spot for rescuing it, pointed out.
The leopard had escaped from the school premises during the day and was hiding inside nearby bushes. As authorities were in the midst of operations to capture it, it re-entered the school building by scaling a compound wall, officials said, adding that it has now been tranquillised.
"We bolted the room in which the leopard was hiding and tranquilized it with one shot through the mesh and ferried in a cage to the Bannerghatta zoo," Karnataka chief wildlife warden Ravi Ralph said.
The scene of the attack was captured by television channels which had arrived at the spot to cover the operation. Police had a hard time controlling the crowd that had gathered at the spot.
A forest department official said the tranquilised leopard was taken to Bannerghatta Biological Park. "It has been tranquilised and taken in a cage to Bannerghatta. After looking into its health condition, we will leave it in the forest," he said.
"We will identify its pug marks in and around the city's eastern areas to find out from where it entered the city unnoticed and without harming to anyone," Ralph asserted.
Of the five persons injured in the rescue operation, a wildlife activist Sanjay Gubbi, was hurt grievously.
"We will hold a inquiry into the strange incident and take more measures to prevent man-animal conflict, as leopards adapt to human habitats for prey and remain undetected as they camouflage," Ralph added.
With inputs from agencies