© GettyMan-eater: The leopard has claimed 13 victims over the past 30 months
Big cat has attacked and killed 13 people and is terrorising around 50 remote villages in the Didihat region of the Himalayas

A man-eating leopard has claimed more than a dozen victims as villagers fear it is targeting drunk men returning home after boozing sessions.

The jungle cat has spread its reign of terror over the past two-and-a-half years, in the Didihat region of the Kumoan hills in Himalayan India.

Repeated attempts have been made to shoot the elusive leopard after the Uttarakhand Forest Department declared it as a man-eater.

The beast began its killing spree in January 2012, attacking a 46-year-old man from the Simar village.

And the spotted killer went on to claim five more victims that year and five in 2013.

So far in 2014, two more victims have perished, the latest one a 44-year-old on August 1.

Villagers have voiced fears that the animal is preying on men stumbling home drunk after dark.

© GettyRemote villages: The wild cat has struck in the Didihat region of the Himalayas
It is believed the animal is between 10 and 12-years-old and may have developed a taste for human flesh when it was unable to catch its favoured food, dogs.

Many villagers in the region now return home before sundown and carry sticks as the travel through forested areas.

Attempts to hunt down the dangerous wild cat have failed.

Pithoragarh's forest officer YK Singh says, "This month we had sent a team of shooters in the affected village, but they were unsuccessful in their mission. This is the third attempt made so far."