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If you live in a village that has a beautiful lake on its banks, then nothing can be a better sight than this. But if there is a dangerous alligator in this lake, then your happiness can be in vain. Something similar is happening with the people of Luganga village in Uganda. Lake Victoria in Uganda is the largest lake in Africa and the second largest in the world. This lake is less known for its vastness and more because of the fear of Osama Gharial. This 75-year-old alligator found in the Nile has so far chewed 80 people raw. For the past several years, Osama has become another synonym for death in Luganga village. Between 1991 and 2005, Osama Gharial played Holi of blood and chewed raw 1/10 per cent of the village’s population. Many stories of Osama’s cruelty are prevalent in the village. Osama used to swoop and grab the children going to fetch water from the lake and chew them. Not only this, Osama used to deliberately go under fishing boats and drown them and eat the people sitting inside them.
Due to the cunning, cruelty and invincible ability of this giant alligator, the people of the village started calling it Osama after the name of Osama bin Laden. Many villagers even believe that it is Osama himself who is present there in the form of a crocodile. A man Paul witnessed Osama’s horrific attack and somehow saved his life but his brother was not so lucky and he was killed. Paul said, ‘Osama jumped straight out of the water and jumped on top of the boat. I was sitting in the back of the boat and that part sank. Seeing death in front of me, I called for help but Osama had caught my partner Peter’s leg in his strong jaw and tried to drag him into the water. Peter was screaming to get out of Osama’s jaws. The fight between the two also went on for 5 minutes but eventually the alligator took Peter into the water. During this, Peter could only say that the alligator had broken his leg. Paul told that a few days later we found Peter’s head and hand.
The effect of Osama’s fear was that many villagers used to get up at night in fear of him and pleaded to God to save his life. His prayers paid off and in the year 2005, he was successful in catching Osama. During the search operation that lasted for about seven days, Osama got caught in the trap of 50 villagers. These villagers lured them to eat the cow’s lungs and Osama was caught. After this the villagers tied him with the help of a strong rope and loaded it on the pickup. However, Osama’s story did not end there. The villagers wanted to kill him immediately but this is not allowed in Uganda. Officials said that Osama also has a right to life and cannot be killed as a punishment. Instead, this giant creature was given to the alligator breeding center in Uganda. He hoped that the gharial would produce several giant alligators, and their leather could be exported to Italy and South Korea to make handbags. Since the arrival of Osama, the breeding center is now thronged by tourists. There are 5000 alligators here waiting to be killed.
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