Saturday, July 12, 2008

Bangladeshi wrestles with tiger to save brother

Bangladeshi wrestles with tiger to save brother

DHAKA (AFP) — A Bangladeshi man said he fought with a tiger for 30 minutes to save his brother who was critically injured in the attack.

The two men and their father were fishing in Bangladesh's Sunderbans mangrove forest when the tiger pounced, assistant conservator of the forest Bipul Krishna Das told AFP.

One of the brothers was rushed to Sharonkhola sub-district hospital and is in a critical condition following the attack on Wednesday morning, duty doctor Bablu Kishore Biswas said.

"The sharp claw of the tiger penetrated into his jaw. Luckily his neck is not broken, but still his condition is critical," the doctor said.

The younger brother, Masud Mollah, said that without thinking about his own safety, he approached the tiger and grabbed its mouth so it couldn't bite.

Masud, who is being treated for shock, said he fought with the tiger for about 30 minutes after it pounced on his sibling without warning.

"Suddenly, with no warning, a tiger pounced on my brother and he fell down the slope of the canal. He yelled to me to help him. His face was smeared with blood and the tiger was licking it off," Masud said.

"My brother had been holding a big knife, but he dropped it when the tiger attacked. I grabbed the knife, which was lying close to the tiger, and I hit it with the handle."

Masud said he continued to fight with the animal until it gave up and headed back into the forest.

Forest officials have said an increasing human presence in the Sunderbans forest is mainly to blame for a growing number of tiger-related deaths.

According to a UN-funded census, the 10,000 square kilometres Sunderbans mangrove forest, which straddles India and Bangladesh, is home to at least 668 endangered Royal Bengal tigers, with some 420 living on the Bangladesh side.

http://afp.google.com/article/ALeqM5hI2pPSV3pfA0nTRCBBC6f1vRCq7g
http://www.bigcatrescue.org/

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