BENGALURU: Observing that monkeys could be harmed if caught and relocated by private individuals, in turn attracting provisions of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, the Karnataka High Court on Wednesday directed the State Government to file an affidavit setting out a procedure and creating a machinery to receive complaints regarding the monkey menace, and scientific rescue of the animals, without causing them harm during relocation.
A division bench of Chief Justice Abhay Shreeniwas Oka and Justice NS Sanjay Gowda passed the order after hearing a PIL by advocate BS Radhanandan with regard to the monkey menace in the city. This order gains significance in view of the unnatural death of 38 monkeys in Hassan district recently, which is being dealt by the court through suo moto PIL. On this issue, the government stated that it is awaiting the FSL report to know the exact cause of death, besides mentioning about arresting the accused.
After perusing the minutes of a meeting held by the BBMP, which also mentioned about a helpline (080-22221122) to receive complaints about sick and injured monkeys, the court noted that the minutes were slightly vague, since they did not provide for proper procedure, including a machinery adopted to receive complaints regarding monkey menace.
“We direct the State Government to convene a meeting in the presence of Chief Wildlife Warden of Forest Department and BBMP to lay down the procedure. After laying down the same, the appropriate officer of the government should file an affidavit setting out the procedure by August 28, 2021,” the court said, while adjourning the hearing to September 3, 2021.It was stated in the proceedings of the meeting, which was chaired by the CM, that the BBMP received 56 complaints during 2018-21.