COIMBATORE:A six-member team of snake charmers from Manamadurai, Sivagangai district caught 52 snakes inside police housing complex on Avinashi Road here on Thursday.
Police personnel and their family members were shocked to hear the number of reptiles rounded up near their houses.
According to sources, the snake charmer team began their work from 9.30 am and captured the snakes using the magudi (a wind instrument) and herbs.
The locals were impressed with the snake charmers when they saw the snakes obeying and approaching the charmers within a short time after they began playing the magudi and using the herbs. The snake charmers basketed 52 snakes during the four-hour operation near bushes inside the police housing area.
Of the total captured reptiles, more than 30 were kraits and the remaining identified as cobra, Russel’s viper and rat snakes.
The police had tried using a snake catcher from the city two years ago but the attempt failed to charm the reptiles out of hiding. So they brought experts from Manamadurai.
According to sources, the same snake charmers team had visited and captured snakes in residential areas in some districts across the State.
A police inspector confirmed that the snake population increased in recent years because of an increasing rat population inside the police housing area as the premises were not maintained well.
According to sources as many as 250 residential units were located inside three-acre police housing area.
The operation ended at around 1.30pm and the snakes were let free near Anaikatty in Periyanaickenpalayam forest range on Thursday evening.
“As per the procedure, the snakes will be handed over to the forest department and freed in the forest. However we have not received any information on the capture of 40 snakes,” said police officials who remained tight-lipped when Express asked them how much the snake charmers were paid for the work.