Hyderabad: As it makes arrangements to have the 105 monkeys, caught from various places in the city, released in the forest areas, the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) search for monkey catchers continues.
Amid growing complaints from various pockets of the city on monkey menace, the civic body has been struggling to catch hold of individuals or agencies who could take up the task of catching the monkeys and maintain them till release in the wild.
Presently, the GHMC has 105 monkeys, most of them held at a shelter in Amberpet, which are all set to be taken and released in the forest areas of Khammam, Adilabad and Warangal.
The veterinary wing of the civic body responds to calls from residents of different areas and have the monkeys caught and once their numbers accumulate, the Forest Department is approached for mandatory clearnace for their return to the wild.
The Forest Department in turn along with its approval also identifies the locations in the forests where they have to be released, officials said. “The locations are identified based on factors such as availability of water, fruits and shelter,” an official said. From the present troop of monkeys awaiting return to forest, 70 are to be released in Khammam and Adilabad and rest in forest areas of Warangal.
The GHMC has five animal shelters located in each of its zone at Amberpet, Autonagar, Chudibazar, Jeedimetla and Hitec City, but despite best efforts for years has been failing in getting those interested or trained in snaring monkeys in the city. Though, officials from the veterinary wing said that several monkeys were caught and sent back to the wild, the monkey menace continue in some areas of the city.
“Whenever we get complaints, we respond and send our team to lay snare and once captured shift to the shelter,” a senior official of veterinary wing said.
Areas facing the menace
Dilsukhnagar, West Marredpally, Padmarao Nagar, Gandhinagar, Ashoknagar, DD Colony, Ambedkar Open University, Hyderabad Central University
Scarcity of monkey catchers
In a city that offers rich talent base for every profession, the GHMC’s vain struggle to rope in those with inclination and expertise to catch the monkeys continues. Despite best efforts, the civic body has neither been able to get individuals or private agencies to take up the job of snaring monkeys.
Given this, there is a growing feeling among civic body officials that this job be entrusted to the Forest Department as its staff had requisite expertise and also required paraphernalia.
Though the GHMC is prepared to pay Rs 1,000 to Rs 1,200 for every monkey caught, there have been not many takers for it.
“This being the situation, its better the forest staff takes up this job. We are trained to treat and generally take care but not catch and feed the monkeys,” added an official.