The monkey menace in the Chintakunta village of Karimnagar district which is giving jitters to the villagers has become a major poll issue with candidates promising to make the village simian-free

Come elections, it is time for the contesting candidates to announce various sops to lure the voters and get elected. But, during the grama panchayat elections in Chintakunta village of Karimnagar, the election issue is altogether different.

Following the monkey menace in the village, all the contesting candidates have been promising to get rid of simians once they are elected as sarpanch and ward members in the village. The candidates contesting for the post of sarpanch were promising to put a full stop to the monkey menace in the village after their election.

While, some others have gone a step ahead and started deploying the monkey catchers to trap the monkeys well before the elections, which are scheduled to be held on July 31 in the village. They said that the monkey catchers were providing food to the simians regularly and later they would trap them and later release them into the forest.

The villagers said that the monkey menace had become a big issue in the village as everyone was having sleepless nights and also incurring loss to their properties since two years. Hordes of monkeys arrive in the village and damage the tiled roof houses, snatch away food articles from the houses and children and even attack the villagers. S. Laxma Reddy, who is contesting as ward member said that “we don’t have any other issue in the village except the monkey menace.

Children and the elderly are scared to move out of their homes as some monkeys had also bitten them. We are asking the candidates contesting for the sarpanch post to remove all the monkeys from the village before elections”. At one stage, the women self-help group members and other villagers have decided to boycott the elections following the monkey menace.

However, following an assurance to the villagers by the contesting candidates to remove simians, they have agreed to cast their votes.

Tirupathi Naik, who is contesting for sarpanch post in the village, said “I am promising the villagers to remove all the monkeys from the village after my election as the sarpanch”.