Watch: Monkey saved from deadly rope knot that had almost split it in two
A monkey in the popular hill station, Shimla, capital of Himachal Pradesh, was dying a slow death due to a rope tied around his body so tightly that it had started to penetrate the skin. The residents of Shimla had reported this disturbing sight of a suffering monkey to the HP Forest Department. It took about a month for the wildlife wing of the department to capture the monkey and untie the rope. In fact, it was so tight that the team had to use a blade to cut it. The rope left ring-shaped wound around it. The monkey was roaming in the locality all this time in the same condition.
The pressure built on the department as people took to media alleging inaction despite information.
Eventually, on Tuesday, the team rescued the monkey and carried it to the Animal Rescue and Rehabilitation Centre. Luckily, the animal is not critical and is likely to recover soon. A A video of the rescue was posted by a regional online magazine revealed the cruel act of unknown culprit. It was not clear whether the monkey was tied to something with this rope or fell victim to some trap.
Simian Menace in Himachal
Other than being summer capital during imperial rule and currently a popular hill station, Shimla is also famous for its monkey infestation. The famous Jakhu temple (dedicated to lord Hanuman) is the hub of these monkeys. The tourists and locals frequently complaint of troubles caused by monkeys. However, people still have respect for their lives.
The administration has reportedly failed to control the simian population in time and now these animals are wrecking havoc in cities and on agricultural lands. In fact, in 2016, the state was given nod from the centre to declare monkeys as vermin and allow their culling for six months.
Last year, the state government has increased incentives for catching a monkey for sterilization from Rs. 500 to Rs. 700. The government has spent crores in couple of years on similar schemes, but everything seems to have failed.
Then, there were suggestions of re-opening export of monkeys to international market for laboratory experiments or to translocate them to North-Indian states. However, other states declined Himachal’s proposal.
Thereafter, the government allowed people to shoot monkeys if they want. This decision to allow unscientific culling of monkeys remained topic of criticism. Moreover, the guidelines for killing a monkey were impractical to follow for common men. For instance, it was one of the conditions that one can not kill a pregnant female. But the question was how a common folk would determine pregnancy. Also , the state wasn’t taking responsibility if the person who killed a monkey gets sued by someone.
The hill state claims to have sterilized more than 50% of monkey population in the state by 2016. However, the state has not seen any respite from rhesus macaque species, which are among the cleverest in apes. But what makes Shimla’s monkeys special is their behavioral pattern that has undergone negative changes in urban environment. The monkeys now behave more like goons, who don’t hesitate to snatch edibles from hands or bags.