India: Hero teenager describes killer crocodile attack

Patna: A teenager in Bihar has become the talk of the town after he risked his own life by fending off a mighty crocodile in a local river to save his younger brother from the jaws of death.

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The incident took place in Yogapatti block of West Champaran district, some 200 km north-west of Patna, on Wednesday evening.

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Both the brothers had gone outside of their village to wash to their buffaloes in the local river. While the younger brother Niraj Kumar went inside the water, the elder brother Dheeraj Kumar was sitting on the river bank.

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Suddenly, a large crocodile clamped on to Niraj’s thigh.

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Dheeraj jumped into the river without hesitating and began wrestling with the crocodile for 15 minutes in a desperate attempt to save his brother. Witnesses said the crocodile lashed out at him several times with its tail yet Dheeraj continued fighting the reptile and was eventually able to free his brother who suffered serious wounds.

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He was rushed to a local government primary health centre from where he was shifted to another government hospital in the district for better treatment. Doctors said the crocodile tore large chunks of flesh from his thigh and inflicted severe wounds but his condition is out of danger now.

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Free medical treatment

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“The crocodile lashed me several times with its tail but I didn’t leave it and continued hitting it furiously with my knees and pushing my fingers in its eyes. Eventually, it freed my brother from its clutches and moved into deep water,” Dheeraj said.

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Local village council chief Hafiz Gadi has asked the authorities to provide free medical treatment and give a reward to the boy.

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“He did a very commendable job. He bravely fought with the crocodile and ultimately saved his brother from the jaw of death. He needs to be given rewards for bravery,” village council chief Gadi said.

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A local social worker Mukendra Yadav said several crocodiles have moved into local rivers from the nearby Valmiki National Park and Nepal after getting washed away by the flood waters and are posing threats to the lives of local villagers. He said he reported the matter to the local administration as well as the forest department officials several times but none had taken the issue seriously.

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