When 25-year-old e-rickshaw driver Javed Ali went out for work on the morning of November 23 last year, he had little idea that he would return home with the nightmarish experience of a scar, caused by a tiger’s claw, on his hamstring. Ali was one among the thousands of curious onlookers who had gathered at Borguri village in Napaam area on the outskirts of Tezpur, along the banks of the river Brahmaputra in Assam, to see the tiger that had strayed out from Kaziranga National Park (KNP) and taken refuge there. The tiger, stressed and alarmed at the presence of such a large gathering, went after the crowd; a video that went viral, revealed that the tiger fell with Ali on a ditch now covered with sand.
Narrating his ordeal, Ali, who hails from Ahotguri-Balitika village near Tezpur, told Mongabay-India, “Around 2000-3000 people had gathered on the spot to see the Bengal tiger. It suddenly chased us. Seeing no other way out, I jumped in the ditch and the tiger fell on top of me. However, it soon left me and ran to a different side.” Apart from Ali, the tiger had also injured a 2-year-old child from Borguri village. The animal was finally driven back to the forest after a daylong operation carried out by the forest department.
The full article was published by Mongabay on February 26, 2021.