Mystery snake scare empties village

Mystery snake scare empties village

 Only a few residents have stayed back in Akkapura to keep home and hearth intact . DH photoSo palpable is the fear that many residents have fled the village and those staying live in mortal fear of the unseen snake.

In hushed tones, residents talk about the people sleeping at night waking up to feel a sensation akin to an insect bite, more a pinprick the area around which turns black causing an acute burning sensation. The victims usually die unless they receive treatment, residents say. None of course has seen the snake.

That treatment is as bizarre as the legend of the invisible snake. Residents say that the victim of the bite can live only if a hen’s anus is applied to the spot of the bite.

More bizarre - the hen that gives life to the victim loses its, as if poisoned. The hens die almost immediately, the residents say. The sight of dead chicken is common in the village. Certain that the chicken is the only way to save them from the bite, the villagers make sure to carry a chicken everywhere they go.

Ningappa, Roopa, Doddamani Anjinappa, Chowdamma and little girl Meenakshi and a boy Anjinappa are all said to have been bitten by the unseen snakes. Of them, Durgamma (35) went in for native medication and recovered.

The phenomenon had haunted the village a year ago. The hen treatment had saved many lives then, residents say. But the return of the mystery snake has baffled the villagers, many of who, unable to rationalise the happenings, are fleeing the village. 

More than 40 people have moved out of the village and only a few members from each family have stayed back. “But, how long can we live away from our own village?” asks Doddamani Moogappa. 

The little village of about 40 houses wears a deserted look. The fields remain unattended, with no sowing of seeds or timely irrigating.

The petrified residents have so far received no relief from the local administration or medical assistance.

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