Friday, November 16, 2007

Never Look a Monkey in the Eye

New Delhi, India has a serious monkey problem. Rhesus macaques have taken over the city. And no, I'm not joking. I'm not even exaggerating. A gang of monkeys recently raided the city’s police headquarters. Mean-spirited macaques wait outside of hospitals and attack patients for their IV fluids. Others can be spotted bathing their infants in New Delhi’s fountains or even taking rides on the subway.

And then, just when the citizens of one of the largest cities on Earth thought the problem couldn't get any worse . . . their deputy mayor was murdered by monkeys. In October, four of the beasts attacked Sawinder Singh Bajwa while he sat reading the paper on his balcony. As he tried to drive them away, he lost his balance and fell over the side.

Yet despite everything, monkeys are still free to frolic through the palaces and parks. Most of New Delhi’s residents are Hindus, and their religion prevents them from harming the animals. In fact twice a week, followers of the monkey god, Hanuman, still gather to feed the creatures.

Meanwhile, the city's only official monkey catcher has quit in despair. The rich have begun hiring private monkey catchers who use bigger, meaner monkeys to frighten the macaques. (Not long ago, they tried this same approach in New Delhi's subways. The results were disastrous.)

Until the monkey problem can be solved, officials offer one piece of advice to the people of New Delhi. If you don't want to be attacked, "never look a monkey in the eye."

Read more here and here.

(Above: Photo by Manpreet Romana for Agence France-Presse. Below: The Hindu monkey god, Hanuman.)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

MONKEYS? How do flippin monkeys murder a man? Where do you FIND these things? MONKEYS? MONKEYS? sorry, let me comprehend this... ok one more MONKEYS? i'm done
I don't know why I even get surprised any more.
I do love hearing about these things,though. I think u r the only person in the world now who could ever use the element of surprise on me,Ananka.

7:28 PM  
Anonymous Nellie said...

That REALLY makes me want to go do New Delhi!;)

7:32 PM  
Blogger theatre said...

sweet, dude thats so crazy it's awesome, but of course :) it's all about the monkeys!

Isn't this amazing? I remembered to actually sign in!

9:01 PM  
Blogger Spring said...

Those New Delhians (what do you call them?) seriously need to do something about the monkeys!

That reminds me of the time when a seagull knocked a sandwich out of my grandpa's hand while he was eating it....

10:12 PM  
Blogger International Mastermind said...

Ooh, I remember a seagull when I was seven, hunching over and locking it's eyes on my pizza. Thre was one watching every one of my family members. My dad screamed "Save yourselves!" and threw his pizza about 5 yards away. then we relocated to a different spot. :)
That was on vacation to the beach.

5:53 AM  
Anonymous Nellie said...

Sheez, Spring, you seriously have some neat stories! Tell them all!;)

8:44 AM  
Anonymous infamous said...

Gosh, a couple weeks ago we where watching The Birds! Now it's The Monkeys!

11:09 AM  
Anonymous Patsee said...

We read about that at school a week or so ago.

I heard they pay the apes that drive away the rhesus monkeys in bananas.

But not that the people of New Delhi are gathering to feed the monkeys.

12:18 PM  

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