The menace of monkeys continues to persist in several areas of the city, while the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC), for all practical purposes, has abdicated its responsibility to control them.
The primates roam around freely on roads, within residential premises, and occasionally even attack people, terrifying the city residents.
The problem is especially high in areas such as Padmarao Nagar, New Bhoiguda, Telecom Nagar Colony, Gachibowli, and Musheerabad, besides peripheral regions of the city, closer to the forested areas.
“During recent summer, a troop of monkeys would visit our locality practically every day, forcing us to keep the children indoors during holidays. They got very bold and would snatch things from our hands,” E. Vani, resident of Telephone Colony in Kothapet shared.
Complaints to the GHMC would not yield any response, and any occasional response would be to install a cage with bait in it. Watching a single monkey get caught in the cage, the other members of the troop would escape immediately, resulting in temporary relief to that particular colony.
Number of monkeys caught by the civic body has come down over the years, more so during the past two years. While 142 monkeys were caught in 2018-19, and 355 in 2019-20 from the six zones of GHMC as per the official data, the number has come down to 62 in 2020-21 and 61 during 2021-22.
Officials informed that there has been no response for quite a few years to the tender notifications inviting bids for catching monkeys. Earlier too, only one family, whose traditional occupation was catching monkeys, would bid for the job, informed officials.
After the patriarch of the family passed away a few years ago, his successors were not willing to continue in the profession. There are no other experts in the whole city who can net the primates successfully, shared an official.
Further, the process after catching them is very lengthy. The simians will have to be taken to the rescue and rehabilitation centre in Chincholi village of Nirmal district, where they will have to undergo either vasectomy or tubectomy. After recovery, they will have to be left in forests far away, mostly in Adilabad district, for which permission from the Chief Wildlife Warden is mandatory as they are protected wildlife species.