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Chandigarh

Posted at: Jan 4, 2018, 2:25 AM; last updated: Jan 4, 2018, 2:25 AM (IST)MONKEY MENACE

HC orders Rs 2-lakh relief to victim’s kin

Gives UT Administration three-week deadline to seek instructions from Adviser
HC orders Rs 2-lakh relief to victim’s kin
City residents will be provided with useful information on dealing with the monkey menace through advertisements. A file photo

Saurabh Malik

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 3

Holding that the Chandigarh Administration and the Municipal Corporation were duty-bound to undertake essential measures for preventing untoward incidents due to the monkey menace in the city, the Punjab and Haryana High Court has set a three-week deadline for the UT to seek instructions from the Adviser.

Taking up the matter, Justice Rajan Gupta made it clear that the UT would then apprise the court whether a coordination committee could be formed to examine the feasibility of coming out with a comprehensive plan to curb the monkey menace in the city.

Justice Gupta also ordered Rs 2-lakh interim compensation to the kin of a 17-year-old killed due to simian menace.

As a petition filed against the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation by Bhupinder Kaur and another petitioner came up for hearing, Justice Gupta asked UT senior standing counsel Suvir Sehgal whether lack of co-ordination existed among UT departments, leading to inordinate delay in coming up with a comprehensive plan to curb the nuisance.

Responding to the query, Sehgal submitted that he would seek instructions from the UT Adviser and apprise the court on the setting up of the co-ordination committee to examine the matter.

“Admittedly, a 17-year-old boy was killed in an accident when a concrete slab had fallen on him due to the monkey menace. The court feels that it is the duty of the Administration and the corporation to take necessary steps to prevent such incidents. In the interest of justice, another three weeks’ time is granted to seek instructions and apprise the court,” Justice Gupta asserted.

The UT Forests and Wildlife Department has already made clear its intent to ensure residents who feed simian unburden their wallets. The department has, in fact, decided to request the MC to amend its bye-laws to make monkey feeding an offence punishable by fine on the Shimla MC pattern.

In an affidavit on steps taken and contemplated to curb the menace in the city, UT Chief Conservator of Forests and Chief Wildlife Warden Santosh Kumar has stated that a citizens’ helpline would be made more effective. Residents would also be provided with useful information on dealing with the peril through advertisements in print and electronic media. Printed literature regarding awareness on handling the issue would also be prepared and distributed among people.

Elaborating on the steps contemplated by the department to further control the menace, the affidavit added it would also plant more fruit-bearing species in available patches in forest areas for ensuring availability of food in the woods for the simians.

Fact file

As a petition filed against the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation by Bhupinder Kaur and another petitioner came up for hearing, Justice Rajan Gupta asked UT senior standing counsel Suvir Sehgal whether lack of co-ordination existed among UT departments, leading to inordinate delay in coming up with a comprehensive plan to curb the monkey menace.

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