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Monkey business lucrative in Himachal, literally!

Mon, Apr 06, 2015, 02:52 PM
Shimla, April 6 , 2015: Monkey business is getting lucrative like never before in Himachal Pradesh!

More and more youngsters are hopping on to the bandwagon, with the state government disbursing no less than Rs.3 crore to them, mainly the unemployed youth, in the past three years.

The wildlife wing pays Rs.500 for leashing a monkey for sterilization.

State Forest Minister Thakur Singh Bharmouri told IANS that the scheme to catch stray monkeys was aimed at curbing their menace. It started in October 2011.

So far, 336 people have been paid over Rs.3.22 crore. A total of 94,334 monkeys have been sterilized since 2007, the minister said.

Wildlife officials said the monkey census of 2013 showed their population in the state at 236,000. This was a decline from 319,000 in 2004.

Thousands of farmers in Shimla, Solan, Sirmaur, Bilaspur, Hamirpur, Una, Mandi and Kangra districts claim to have incurred losses mainly due to marauding monkeys.

The wildlife wing estimates that more than 900,000 farmers are affected by monkeys.

Officials said the government has set up seven monkey sterilization centres, each with an annual capacity of 5,000 surgeries. Two more centres are in the pipeline.
Agency: IANS
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