Police in India have shot dead a tiger after it killed at least nine people in Champaran, Bihar state.
Dubbed the “man-eater of Champaran”, the beast was killed after a hunt by around 200 police officers and district officials. Some officers patrolled on elephants to find it.
The male tiger had been terrorising communities around the Valmiki Tiger Reserve.
India is home to more than 70% of the world’s wild tigers.
India’s tiger reserves – protected areas where the animals can live – have not expanded at the same rate as its tiger population.
That has forced some big cats to turn to human-dominated landscapes for survival, which leads to livestock, and sometimes people being killed.
The operation was led by Bihar police, who surrounded a sugarcane field near the village of Sitaltola Baluwa to kill the three-year-old tiger known as T-104.
Kumar Gupta, chief wildlife warden for the region, told the Times of India the tiger had been identified as “dangerous to human lives”.
Valmiki Tiger Reserve’s director, Nesamani K, said the final hunt to find T-104 had begun on Saturday, shortly after news emerged that a mother and her child had been killed in a tiger attack.
“It was a sleepless night for the whole village,” Paltu Mahato told the Hindustan Times. “While some of us kept banging stones against each other, others kept beating tin containers to shoo away the tiger.”
Attempts to tranquilise the animal were unsuccessful and the tiger showed a “complete lack of fear” when surrounded by teams, Mr Gupta added.
Two teams, on two elephants, went into the forest, and a third one was on stand-by where authorities thought the tiger would exit from.
T-104 was shot at 15:15 local time on Saturday.
Bihar’s wildlife warden said there was no information available to suggest the killings of people had been carried out by another tiger.
According to government data published in 2019, between 40 and 50 people are killed by tigers each year.