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Zookeeper injured by big cat

Zookeeper injured by big cat

BAHAWALPUR: A zookeeper on Saturday suffered critical injuries as a lion attacked him at the Bahawalpur Zoo.

Dawn learnt that as soon as lion’s attendant Fayyaz along with foodstuff (beef) entered the cage, the big cat pounced on him and injured him with his paw.

Fayyaz’s screams attracted a number of zoo visitors and other employees who rushed to the scene. Fayyaz managed to come out of the cage and was rushed to Bahawal Victoria Hospital (BVH) where he was said to be critical.

A source told Dawn that it appeared the lion was hungry and attacked the attendant in a fit of rage for delaying his food.

When contacted, Zoo Curator Naveedul Haq denied that the big cat was hungry. He said Fayyaz would enter the cage daily and the animal had been friendly with him for the last two to three years since the lion was shifted here from Lahore Zoo. Asked if the big cat was underfed, the curator claimed “the attacking lion is a healthy animal and you may come and see.”

Haq said an inquiry would be conducted to ascertain the causes of violent behaviour of the big cat.

Published in Dawn October 4th, 2015

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