NEWS AND COMMENT-MAHARASHTRA, INDIA: In Majalgaon and Lavul village in the state of Maharashtra, India, enraged monkeys are taking revenge on the street dogs by carrying them to the top of trees and buildings and throwing them off to their deaths. And if people try to intervene, they attack them. It looks like the primates are taking over and it has a hint of that well-known film Planet of the Apes.
They believe that the monkeys became angry when one of the dogs killed one of their infants. The villagers say that there are almost no dogs left to kill so they are reportedly turning on their children.
The residents in the area have on occasions become panic stricken as they themselves have come under attack. The monkeys are on the rampage. That’s the impression I get from the report in the Daily Mail Online.
Children have been seen fleeing the enraged monkeys. In one picture two panic-stricken women flee the monkeys as warfare between dogs and monkeys takes place around them.
It’s reported that monkeys immediately attack dogs as soon as they see them before taking them to a high place to throw them off. They believe that in one month 250 dogs have been killed in this intelligent yet barbaric way.
It’s a very peculiar situation because there are hints of barbaric human behaviour here. I’m reminded of the relationship between Australians and feral cats on their continent. Australian’s kill feral cats in any way possible often cruelly. They don’t drop dogs from the top of the building but they do drop poisoned (1080 poison) baited sausages from a helicopter! Not much difference really when you think about it.
The residents of these villages contacted the local forest department for help. They wanted them to round up the murdering monkeys. They arrived but were unable to catch any monkeys. The villagers therefore felt obliged to deal with the matter themselves.
However, when they did, the monkeys fought back. There are even reports of people falling from heights when trying to save dogs that were being carried there for ‘execution’.
And the news media reports that the monkeys are no longer content to kill the street dogs. They are now turning their attention to children. It’s a mass revenge attack. In one instance an eight-year-old infant was grabbed and dragged away by monkeys. Villagers threw stones at the monkey to scare it away.
Monkey menace in India
You will find many reports on the Internet of out-of-control monkeys in India which have become a menace. It’s got worse. And it appears to be happening over many parts of India including Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh.
I’ve seen photographs of large numbers of marauding monkeys in urban environments among pedestrians and traffic. It almost looks like a takeover. The monkey-human conflicts are on the rise in India. Farmers have to guard their crops against wild monkeys. One farmer lost 1.2 hectors of corn having invested ₹50,000 because the monkeys completely destroyed it.
One farmer said that they worship Hanuman but he believes that these monkeys belong to the “evil monkey King Bali who was slain by Lord Ram”.
He believes that his ancestors warned them that the apocalypse will have arrived when the monkeys start raiding crops. A far-fetched viewpoint perhaps. This is not the apocalypse but conflict between different species of animal because there’s too many of them living too closely together in an exaggerated example of the rat race.
It is a reflection of how the way life on this glorious but human-damaged planet is becoming too stressful for its inhabitants in certain parts of the world where they are all compressed together.
Several Indian states are struggling to stop the assaults by monkeys on people and farm produce. In Uttarakhand, some farmers are selling up. In one village in that region almost 50% of land which could be cultivated lies fallow because of destruction by wild animals such as monkeys.
Research by the Primate Research Centre, Jodhpur, a government-run institute, informs us that there are around 1,000 monkey bites on people every day in Indian cities. Where there are large numbers of monkeys in urban environments there are reports of monkeys “encroaching and destroying property and robbing people”.
In Varanasi, monkeys have chewed through the optical fibre cables which were laid down to provide the city with Wi-Fi. They’ve got to relay the cables underground to protect them. Was that an act of deliberate destruction by the monkeys to interfere with human activities?
In Delhi, monkeys can wreak havoc. The deputy mayor of Delhi fell from his terrace in 2007 when monkeys attacked him. In Delhi’s famous India Coffee House the owners warn customers not to sit outside because of the monkeys. There are sometimes 30-40 monkeys outside in a large group. They attack together. Waiters have used firecrackers to disperse them.
There is a monkey problem in India. The monkeys have become habituated to living near and around people. Their numbers have grown through unfettered breeding. They have become bold which has led to a genuine conflict between them and people to the point where the balance of power is not quite so distinctly in favour of people.
Correction: there is not just a monkey problem in India. There is a human problem in India. The human is as culpable if not more so. They are in charge. There are too many humans and too many human-animal conflicts. It isn’t just the monkey-human conflict but many other species are in conflict with the human population. That’s what it looks like to an outsider.
Note: This is a video from another website which is embedded here. Sometimes they are deleted at source which stops them working on this site. If that has happened, I apologise but I have no control over it.