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MCD bogged down by monkey menace

Aarti Nagraj,CNN-IBN
May 21, 2007 at 04:13pm IST

New Delhi: The trap is set and the bait is ready. Nandlal is out on his daily beat, but this time his opponent has seen through the game. The leader of the opposition pack fights the temptation and checks others from falling too.

This is Nandlal's job - catching troublemaking monkeys day in and day out. Each catch fetches him Rs 450. The job may not be rewardingn enough, but it sure is challenging.

"I get a lot of catches scratches while doing this. but this my job," says Nandlal.

Nandlal belongs to an exclusive club. He is one of the only three monkey catchers in Delhi.

And they are the first and the last line of defence in the Municipal Corporation of Delhi's efforts to check the monkey menace. In fact, the MCD is trying to get more monkey catchers, but is not getting any response to its tenders.

Says MCD spokesperson, Deep Matheu, "There are four reasons why people do not come forward for this job - religious sentiments, a non-traditional job, people opting for other jobs and the dangers involved in the job."

The Delhi High Court had asked the civic body to catch monkeys from residential areas and send them to the Asola Bhatti sanctuary, but the MCD's lack of resources means more happy days for Delhi's monkeys.

It takes much more than just tempting food to catch these monkeys. It requires a lot of patience,and some guts.


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