Panchayat takes bull by the horns
The Bighati gram panchayat in Hooghly’s Singur block dipped into Rs 3,000 of its own development funds this week to tackle an unlikely problem.
Panchayat officials said on Sunday that they were forced to arrange for the removal of an untamed bull that had unleashed panic in the area after having killed one person and injuring seven last week.
“We had contacted forest and animal husbandry department officials regarding the bull last week, but they cited jurisdiction-related complications,” said Dipak Patra, the chief of the Trinamul-run panchayat.
“We were forced to take the step ourselves after it killed one of our people and threatened our lives by consequence. Both departments said taming a bull was not under their jurisdiction,” Patra added.
According to sources, officials at the husbandry department had said they could not deal with wild animals, whereas forest officials had said they could not operate outside forest areas.
In the end, the panchayat officials hired experts in the area with their own funds.
“It took the experts almost two hours to tie the bull by the limbs. But we were finally able to place the bull inside a mini truck,” a panchayat official said, adding that the bull was released in a deserted area in Pandua, 35km away, known to be home to stray bovines.
“We hope it will not return anytime soon,” said a local police officer, adding that there had been several complaints regarding the bull over the past two weeks.
The Bighati panchayat is not the first locality to find itself in this situation. Last November, residents of Mostapur in East Burdwan’s Katwa had faced the wrath of a bull named “Don”, who had strayed into homes and habitations and injured at least six persons.