BENGALURU: Stating that the authorities are receiving several complaints related to human-monkey conflict from across Karnataka, the State Government on Wednesday submitted a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) before the Karnataka High Court on capturing the monkeys without causing any harm and releasing them in a scientific manner in their natural habitat.
Suggesting effective garbage management in urban areas, in the long run, to address the issue of monkeys in the SOP, the forest department has pointed out that provisioning at temples at tourist sites also leads to increased cohabitation with humans resulting in a conflict situation. In rural areas, the human-monkey conflict is mainly in the form of crop foraging.
For translocation and/or rehabilitation of monkeys, it was suggested to the urban local bodies to identify and provide space, infrastructure and financial assistance for capturing, handling and safe release of the animals by establishing monkey rescue and rehabilitation centres in areas where there is severe monkey menace in collaboration with the Forest Department.
Taking the SOP on record, a division bench of Acting Chief Justice Alok Aradhe and Justice S Vishwajith Shetty directed the Forest Department to implement the SOP in letter and spirit, while disposing of the PIL filed by advocate BS Radhanandan with regard to the monkey menace in Bengaluru.
According to the SOP, facilities need to be developed in rehabilitation centres for sterilisation of the monkeys and necessary medical care after the surgery to control the population in the long run. After sterilisation, a decision may be taken regarding the continuation of the monkeys in the rescue and rehabilitation centre or release them in a suitable location depending on the medical condition of the animals.
The said decision may be taken in consultation with the concerned chief conservator of forests or conservator of forests of the circle. The monkeys captured from urban areas should not be released in habitats where there is a risk of spreading acquired pathogens to other wildlife. For rural areas, each forest division has to identify suitable areas for the safe release of monkeys taking into consideration the suitability of habitat, presence of endangered species such as lion-tailed macaque, etc.