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Man-eating lion gets life sentence in zoo

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NEW DELHI — India has sentenced three Asiatic lion to life in a zoo after it murdered at least three persons near Gir National Park in Gujarat state.

Seventeen lions were rounded up a month ago and had their paw prints and excrement tested after three people were killed.

The lions — a male and two females — have been caged in western India and will never be released back into the wild, forest officials said on Thursday.

A.P. Singh, the main conservator of Gujarat state, said human remains were found in the faeces of one male lion and two females.

He said the male had attacked and killed the humans, while the females had eaten the leftovers.

The male lion has been moved to an enclosure at the nearby Junagadh zoo, while the two females will be held in cages at a rescue centre, a zoo official said.

The other 14 lions will be released back into the wild at Gir, a sanctuary that has become overcrowded beyond its 270 lion capacity.

While some of India’s remaining 500 or so wild lions have migrated to surrounding wildlife parks in search of territory, other prides have settled near riverbeds or farmlands on the sanctuary’s borders, leading to conflict with nearby villagers.

Agencies

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Tourist arrivals jumped 73.5 percent in July

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KATHMANDU — Tourist arrivals to Nepal jumped 73.5 percent in the month of July, according to statistics released by Nepal Tourism Board (NTB).

The NTB said that this increment is because of a sharp increase in the number of travellers from countries like India, China, the US and the UK. The growth in the numbers has also been attributed to Indian pilgrims visiting Mount Kailash Mansarovar in Tibet, via Nepal.

The statistics show that Nepal received a whopping 73,285 international tourists in July—a time of the year that is considered to be an off-season for tourists due to the monsoons. With July’s figures, the number of foreign tourists visiting Nepal in the first seven months (January–July) of 2018 reached 593,299, which is an increase of 18 percent as compared to the same period last year.

Total 18,385 Indian tourists visited Nepal via air transport, which is up 80.4 percent compared to the same period last year.

After India, Nepal received the highest number of visitors from China. The Chinese tourist numbers have more than doubled to 13,123 in the month of July. This is a 125.4 percent growth in comparison to the arrivals in the same month last year.

Overall arrivals from SAARC countries registered a growth of 66 percent, in comparison to the same month last year. However, arrivals from Bangladesh declined by nine percent. Arrivals from rest of the Asian countries have also recorded a robust growth of 86.2 percent.

Visitors from Japan and South Korea to Nepal also increased by 36 percent and 21.9 percent respectively.

Likewise, an overall increase of 54.1 percent in July has been recorded from European source markets. However, arrivals from Austria declined by 72.6 percent.

The number of visitors from the US and Canada have also grown by 79.6 percent and 73.3 percent respectively.

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