The New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) has been issued a legal notice for installing electric wires in areas under its jurisdiction to ward off monkeys from buildings in Central Delhi. The complaint was filed by Gujarat-based animal rights group, Ahimsa Mahasangh.
While affirming that it has been served a notice, NDMC officials maintained that the measures taken by them are completely safe. “This group has claimed that this measure violates the Wildlife Protection Act. However, these steps are completely safe. The intensity of the current in these wires is quite low and not lethal,” a senior NDMC official said. The council has been asked to reply to the notice in a month’s time.
According to NDMC officials, the notice stated that the electric shock will harm the monkeys and this was in violation of the Wildlife Protection Act. “Tests were conducted before these wires were installed. Monkeys will not get injured because the wires emit a low-voltage shock,” the official said.
NDMC officials said the electric wires have been installed in VVIP areas such as Shastri Bhawan and North Block. “For a very long time, we have been receiving complaints about offices being vandalised by monkeys. We have tried different measures to curb the menace and we finally installed wires around important offices to keep monkeys away,” the official said.
From using rubber bullets, providing food to monkeys in forested areas to employing a group of forty people dressed as langurs, the civic body has tried a range of steps to curb the monkey menace.
Despite these initiatives, the NDMC said the situation has not improved. Stating that it was hard-pressed for further ideas to control the menace, the official said, “Various measures have been taken by the NDMC to handle the menace but nothing has worked. We have even asked for out-of-the-box ideas to control the situation.”