Human-monkey face-off results in road blockade in Odisha

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Kendrapara: Human-monkey conflict today reached a flashpoint in a remote village of Odisha s Kendrapara district with angry residents resorting to road blockade affecting vehicular traffic on the busy Cuttack- Chandballi state highway.

Sub Divisional Police Officer Kedarnath Sahu said vehicular traffic was disrupted for about 45 minutes this morning as people from Khamalo village squatted on the highway. Their sole demand was that rampaging monkeys be driven away from the village. Later normalcy was restored after the arrival of forest officials to cage the monkeys, Sub Divisional Police Officer, Kedarnath Sahu said.

The people of Khamalo village have been badly hit by monkey menace for the past fortnight as the unruly langurs have ensured closing down of schools and the Anganwadi centre.

The families have stopped sending their children outside and to school due to monkey threat, the SDPO said.

Also Read: Dozen people injured in attack by monkeys
About 20 persons, including children, have already been injured following unprovoked monkey attack, said Ex- Sarpanch Deepak Kumar Sethy.

Since past one week, people have been at the receiving end of violence triggered by monkeys who have gone on a biting spree, Sethy said.

“We drew the attention of district administration and forest department. But it was to no avail. So under compelling circumstances, people decided to break law by disrupting traffic on the highway. People want the intervention of government agencies for early end to simian menace,” Sethy said.

The monkey menace is seen everywhere from places of worship, schools to village markets. The animals snatch away eatables, fruits and vegetables, narrated a local resident Pravat Behera, who was hospitalized following simian attack.

Kendrapara Collector, Muralidhar Mallick said, The forest officials had rushed to the village yesterday. However they could not spot the trouble-making monkeys.”

Forest Range Officer, Adhir Behera said the forest personnel have rushed to the villages to cage the monkeys by spreading nylon nets. In case this fails, they have decided to tranquilise them ensuring that no harm is done to the animals.

“Once they are caught, we will leave them in unmanned forest areas in neighbouring Jajpur district , he said.

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