Keonjhar: In an act of bravery, a 30-year-old tribal man confronted a furious wild bear in a forested area in Barbil tehsil to survive from the claws of death.
The survivor Sanika Munda had ventured into wildlife-infested forest area near Meminhoting village to pluck mushroom and mangoes when he had a horrifying with a wild bear yesterday.
Munda sustained multiple wounds. Hospitalized at Barbil community health centre (CHC), he is out of danger. He was subjected to 23 stitches in the wounded parts of his body, hospital sources said.
The injured tribal man recalled the harrowing experience describing it as a providential escape from death.
“I was plucking mangoes by using a stick. The bear emerged from nowhere and stole furious glance at me. The distance between the animal and me was hardly 20 to 25 feet. I could see the lurking danger. I had little time to react. The animal pounced on me. It caught hold my arm and began dragging me. On the spur of moment, I picked up the stick lying close to me and hit me. It released me from its grasp. Later I climbed up a tree to survive from further attack from the animal. But the bear did not relent. It tried to climb up the tree. I broke a branch of the tree and dealt blow on it. It later retreated”, he recalled.
With fear utmost in his mind, Munda lied atop the tree for than an hour. Later he got down from the tree as the animal had left the spot.
Forest personnel are of the view that people are exposing themselves to bear attack by venturing into their habitats.
The sloth bears often frequent the forest areas which are covered with fruit bearing trees like mangoes and jack fruits. As these fruits mature and ripe during summer months, these wild animals throng these specific pockets for their daily food intake. The herbivorous animals also intrude into the orchards within the human habitations areas. That leads to the outbreak of man-animal confrontation.
The state forest department has issued advisories asking the residents of forest-side villages not to venture alone into forested areas which flush with fruit bearing trees, said Divisional Forest Officer, Anandpur Forest Division, Ajit Kumar Satpathy.