The body of a honey collector was recovered from the Sundarbans near the Satkhira range on Monday, after he was killed by a tiger while sleeping inside his boat.
The deceased, Ruhul Amin Sheikh, 45, was from Satkhira’s Shyamnagar upazila.
Satkhira’s Burigoalini Station Officer Belal Hossain, confirming the authenticity of the incident, said: “A tiger attacked Ruhul Amin while he was sleeping inside a boat early Sunday and dragged him into the forest.”
Amin's brother Hossain Sheikh was also injured when he came to his aid.
“On Monday morning, forest officials recovered Amin's body and rescued his brother with the assistance of local fishermen and honey collectors,” Belal added.
Shyamnagar police Officer-in-Charge Syed Mannan Ali said he had learned about the incident.
According to local NGO "Leaders," over 1,100 people, mostly Mowals, Bawals and fishermen dependent on the Sundarbans, have been killed by tigers in the last 10 years. But the deaths of people have decreased with the declining number of tigers.
Mowals are allowed to enter the mangrove forest at certain times of the year.
On the other hand, Bawals gather Golpata (leaves of Nipa palm) and other resources on a regular basis under government management since the leaves become useless if not collected.
As per superstitions, Leaders states, the widows are blamed by the society for the deaths of men by tigers or crocodiles, and are banished from their land and often subjected to harassment. They are termed tiger-widows.
Organisations like “Leaders” and Anirban are working for the rehabilitation of the tiger-widows who have to undergo immense sufferings and economic hardship.
“Leaders” official Mohan Kumar Mondol explains: “Tigers can easily sense the presence of human flesh in the vicinity from the smoke and the smell of burning the beehives.”
On the other hand, Bawals lose lives when they enter the forest to collect leaves. “Tiger dens are usually located in or around the Golpata trees,” Mohan told the Dhaka Tribune.