BENGALURU: Locals in Hassan were in for a shock late on Wednesday night when they opened around 15-20 sacks thrown on Sakleshpur-Begur road and found a large number of bonnet macaques stacked in them.
The monkeys were in a pathetic condition, with preliminary investigations showing they were poisoned and beaten up.
While some locals and volunteers tried to feed them water, others frantically called the forest department and police for help. Officials came to the site early on Thursday morning by which time some monkeys had already died, locals complained.
Deputy Conservator of Forests, Hassan, Dr K N Basavaraj told The New Indian Express that of the lot, 36 died, 15 survived and escaped and one which was brutally injured is being treated.
He said: “Even though there are monkeys in Belur and Sakleshpur, there are no conflicts, so the possibility that the locals around killed them is ruled out. Also, examining their coats, they do not look like the ones from the Ghat regions because their coats and fur is thinner. It is possible that they have been killed somewhere else and dumped here.”
Police officials said they are investigating at the check posts and with locals. An investigating officer said it seems like they were brought in a truck and thrown away, because bringing so many sacks on a bike or in a car would be difficult.
In the meantime, members of Prani Daya Sangha, who worked with locals on Wednesday night and Thursday morning to revive the animals, have announced a reward for those who find the culprits and help in the investigation.