Dated: 17 April, 2016
The State government is committed to get the state free from monkey menace and is making every possible effort in this direction. The Government has initiated "Mukhya Mantri Khet Sanrakshan Yojna" with an outlay of Rs. 25 Crore to protect the crop of the farmers from the ., stray and wild animals from this fiscal. Under this scheme the Government would provide 60 percent financial assistance to the farmers for fencing their fields.
The State Government has established eight sterilization centres in the state to get rid of the monkey menace and more than one lakh monkeys have been sterilized so far. Under this programme one more sterilization centre would be opened at Kaniya Nala (Sanj) in District Shimla. The State Government has worked out new scheme of establishing Van Vatika to rehabilitate the sterilized monkeys. Under the scheme initially the Van Vatikas would be setup at Chintpurni and Poanta Sahib and later after the success of these Van Vatikas the Government would consider to set up more at suitable places.
Due to the efforts of the State Government a decrease of 18,500 of the monkey population has seen in past two years in the State. It was disclosed recently in a report presented to Forest Minister by Mysore University. According to the report, in the year,2013 the population of monkeys was reported as 2,26,086 through Head Count Method but due to the efforts of the Government the population was reduced to 2,07,614 in the year, 2015. In past one decade massive decrease in the population of the monkeys has been observed in the State. In 2004 the population of the monkeys was 3,17,512.
According to the report, sterilization has resulted in the decrease of the population of the monkeys, which would be continued in future as well. As per report, 27,276 km of land was suitable for monkeys living in the State. In most of the forest circles a decrease in the monkey population has been observed but in Nurpur, Renukaji, Bilaspur, Rohru, Dharamshala, Pangi and Dalhousi an increase in the monkey population has been noticed. These circles are either situated in the north western or south eastern borders of the state. The report also disclosed that the 348 beats have been spotted as hot spots out of which 83 are in forest areas.
The population survey of the monkeys has been done through Trail Survey using Transact method and Geographical Information System. The survey was done in the entire state covering 2631 roads of 12,782 km from June to July 2015 and environment and height etc. 22 standards have also been studied. The population survey of monkeys was done on the basis of these standards and scientific assessments. Himachal Pradesh has became the first state to adopt these standards of survey in the country.
The state has also observed decrease in the monkey attacks on people. The State Government was serious to check the monkey menace in the state. Government is also providing compensation to the people effected by the monkeys and the compensation amount has also been increased. The compensation amount provided on death of a person after any animal attack has been increased from Rs. one lakh to Rs.1.5 lakh and in case of serious injury the amount has been increased from Rs. 33,000 to Rs. 75,000 and for minor injury from Rs. 5,000 to Rs. 10,000. The Government has provided compensation amount of approximately Rs. One crore to 2200 people so far.