NDMC declares war on monkeys

NDMC declares war on monkeys

After failing to control monkey menace in its area through various means, the New Delhi Municipal Council has now brought in rubber bullet guns to scare away the animal.

The civic agency has procured two teasing guns, which the monkey-catching squad will use in areas under its jurisdiction.

“The guns will have rubber bullets and will be completely harmless.

They will function on gas and will produce a sound loud enough to scare away the animal,” NDMC Medical Health Officer P K Sharma said.

The price of a single gun is between Rs 40,000 and Rs 50,000, Sharma said, adding that the guns will be used as a pilot project to see the success rate.

The guns will be first tested in areas like North and South Block, Race Course and Sardar Patel Marg, among others. The step was taken after repeated failure by the agency to control the menace in the area over the years.

Complaints, especially from VVIPs and parliamentarians, have increased over a period of time.

The officer said that besides VVIP areas, they will also test the guns on the basis of complaints filed by residents.

If monkeys create trouble in the area, residents can call the helpline and inform the agency, which will then send its monkey-catching squad with the trial guns.

There are 7,000 monkeys in the NDMC area.

Earlier, the civic agency had deployed langurs to scare them, but the monkeys are no longer scared of them and the NDMC cannot use them after their ban by the High Court.

Other methods included installing bait cages to trap monkeys, but that failed as the animals just used to eat the food and go.

“We also tried to seal buildings with electric wires, which give low voltage current. But the idea was not workable in the long run,” Sharma said.

Sharma also brought to the notice the problem aggravated by people at Hanuman Temple in Connaught Place, especially on Tuesday and Saturday when they bring eatables to feed the animals.

“The monkeys are now habituated with the process. People come here to feed them and later, we get complaints from residents of the area. What is not menace for one, may be menace for other,” he said.