ITANAGAR: A 35-year old zoo attendant died at the Biological Park (Itanagar Zoo) here after being mauled by a Royal Bengal tigress on Tuesday.

The deceased has been identified as Poulash Karmakar, a native of Dhekiajuli in Assam’s Lakhimpur district.

Zoo curator Raya Flago said the incident occurred at 2.30 pm on Tuesday when the zoo attendant entered the tigress’s cage to clean the water pond.

“I was informed of the incident by one of our animal attendants. When I reached the zoo along with a doctor and other staff, Karmakar was already dead. He was found bleeding from the face,” Flago said.

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There are three gates that lead to the cage and all of them were left open. We are assuming that this led to the tigress attacking the zoo attendant, Flago said, adding that a police investigation has been launched in the case.

SDPO Kamdam Sikom said a case under unnatural death has been lodged at the Itanagar police station and the body of the deceased has been sent for post mortem at the R K Mission Hospital.

“We did not see anything suspicious and it seems to be a case of negligence as per preliminary investigation,” the SDPO said.

Sikhom said the body of the deceased would be handed over to his family members after the post mortem . 

The name of the tigress that mauled Karmakar is Chippi and she is about 8 years old.

Chippi was rescued as an orphan along with Ipra when they were about eight months old from Anini in Upper Dibang Valley district.

They were shifted to the Biological Park in Itanagar in 2013-14.

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