Monkey culling drive suffers for want of money

SOLAN: The HP Kisan Sabha monkey culling drive has suffered badly for want of money. The Sabha that has launched the drive in April this year has failed to yield desired result despite local villagers’ full support to drive. Not only the money but lethargic attitude of Forest Department to support the drive has also come as major de-motivated factors.

Taking to MyHimachal here today, Mr. Pyare Lal Sharma ,General Secretary of HP Kisan Sabha , Solan district has said that as against the total amount of over Rs. 2 lakh required for successful implementation of drive we could hardly manage to collect Rs. 20,000 from villagers.

He said , with this among the drive was initially launched in five Bharti, Delgi, Deothi, Chamat Barech and Shadiana panchayats. As against the expected population of 11000 simians, we could manage to kill around 200 monkeys, he pointed out. The expected target was to kill 1000 monkeys. But rain and bad weather has come as another factor causing set back to drive, he rued.

There was grave shortage of ammunition also, said Mr. Sharma. Though there were 72 licensed guns in five panchayats. Out of this around 45 licensees were helping in drive besides hiring of 6 professional shooters.

The Sabha plan to launch drive in Garhkhal, Aanji Maatla, Rori, Kanda and Gulhadi panchayats have also failed to take off for want of approval from Forest Department. The Forest Range Office, Dharampur has taken long time to give its approval to drive despite repeated pleas.

We were also preparing estimates about losses to crop by monkeys, asserted Mr. Sharma. The monkeys menace has not only caused major losses to farmers but also forced them to abandon the farming on large scale, he maintained. The hundred of acres of land in area were lying barren due to monkey fear, he added.