Three lions died after they were hit by a goods train near the Gir forest in Gujarat’s Amreli district, around 250 km from Ahmedabad, an official said on Tuesday. The incident occurred near the Borala village in Savarkundla taluka when a pride of six lions was walking along the railway track passing from the village, which is located near the Gir Forest.
“A goods train, headed to Pipavav port from Botad, hit three of six lions of the pride during midnight, which led to the death of two lions and a lioness”, Chief Conservator of Forests, Junagadh wildlife circle, DT Vasavada told PTI.
He said an enquiry has been ordered by the Gujarat Forest Department.
“We will probe whether the train was moving at a high speed which could have led to this unfortunate incident. We will also probe whether the forest staff or the lion trackers were at fault in discharging their duties. Stringent action will be taken against the guilty,” he added.
With the latest incident, the number of lions, including cubs, having died in and around the Gir forest since September this year, has reached 35.
While some of them have died of natural cause, many others fell prey to Canine Distemper Virus (CDV) and Protozoa infections and during territorial fights. Gir Forest National Park is the only abode of Asiatic lions.