Updated: Sep 12, 2020
Rajasthan has always been famous for its Fort's/Palace's/Desert/Food and the fascinating culture of the Royal families. But rural Rajasthan is yet to get its share of recognition. One such place is Bera Village“ Homeland to India most feared Predator “Leopard”. Bera is the only place on earth where the leopards and Humans coexist/live in harmony with each other. The Village falls in Pali District and is 134 km from Udaipur and 173 kms from Jodhpur. There is no national park/wildlife sanctuary in which the Leopards live.
🔺The story has it that the Leopards came from the Kumbhalgarh National park and settled in the Aravali range of the rocky mountains of Bera. Since the Habitat of Leopards in this region is Dry monsoon slopes, food is scarce. Hence the choice of food of the Leopards is goats/sheep/cows kept by the Nomadic Rabari tribe/ Rabari villagers of Bera. Now you will wonder “ why will the villagers allow their cattle to be eaten by the Leopards”.
🔺 The answer lies in the beautiful god stories of our mother India. The Rabari tribe is believed to have traveled from Iran and settled into Rajasthan & Gujarat mostly. The nomadic tribe considers Leopard a depiction of their god “ Lord Shiva”. In Fact, if a goat/sheep is taken away by the Leopards, the villagers believe “ shiva will give them double cattle”. The villagers are compensated by the State Forest Department. Another interesting fact about Bera is that Leopard is considered loners/ Solitary creatures but here you can even spot 5 adult leopards chilling together. The leopards also love Bera because the Aravali mountain range here has caves that are interconnected making it easier for the leopards to move around especially when they have cubs.
🔺You will have to visit Bera and believe/confirm the above facts for yourself. Winters will be here soon and that will be the best time to visit the Leopard Land.
Author - Shagun Parashar @shoelacetraveler