Mumbai: Monkey, who was a menace at Lower Parel station, shot with tranquilliser and rescued

Updated: Nov 18, 2017, 13:40 IST | Ranjeet Jadhav

Rescue officials from FD and SGNP sedate and rescue monkey that had been terrorising station and surrounding areas for more than a week

There will be no monkey business at Lower Parel station anymore. On Friday, the forest department (FD) finally caught a male monkey there that has been raiding shops and hoodwinking authorities for more than a week. In a challenging operation, the FD team had to tranquillise the monkey while he was sitting on the rooftop of the railway station, after which he was safely rescued.

The monkey was first shot with a tranquilliser on the roof of the foot overbridge on platform number 1
The monkey was first shot with a tranquilliser on the roof of the foot overbridge on platform number 1

Early Friday morning, FD officials from the Mumbai range of Thane FD territorial with the Sanjay Gandhi National Park rescue team, headed by veterinary officer Dr Shailesh Pethe, reached Lower Parel station with Ankit Vyas, a volunteer from the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau, and decided on a strategy to capture the monkey.

The reportedly aggressive monkey had to be sedated before rescue
The reportedly aggressive monkey had to be sedated before rescue

Vyas, who has been going for the monkey's rescue operation for more than a week now, had asked the stationmaster and other staff at Lower Parel and Mahalaxmi stations to update the team about the locations where the monkey was spotted.

Challenging operation
Vyas told mid-day, "In the morning, we got the news that the monkey had been seen on the rooftop of platform number 1. According to the planning done by the Thane territorial wing and SGNP rescue team, the monkey was tranquillised and safely rescued. It was a challenging operation, but we are thankful that it was completed without any problem."

As soon as the team got the tip-off about the monkey's location, the alertness shown by SGNP's veterinary officer became the key to trapping the monkey. The monkey was first shot with a tranquilliser dart on the roof of the foot overbridge on platform number 1. After the dart hit him, Vyas and another volunteer Dinesh Gupta climbed on the roof, which is at a height of around 15 feet.

Safely rescued
"As the monkey was sedated, we had less time to bring him down. So then, Dinesh tied a rope around the monkey's body and we safely brought him down. He was then shifted into a cage. The Thane FD officials then took the monkey. Thankfully, the capture and rescue operation was successful and nobody got injured. This has helped to prevent any incident of man-animal conflict," added Vyas.

Pethe told mid-day, "It was a challenging task, but because of the efforts taken by our team we were able to tranquillise the monkey around 7.45 am, and he was safely rescued. I would like to appeal to people to refrain from feeding wild monkeys. When they aren't given food after getting used to being fed, they start snatching it, which increases chances of man-animal conflict."

The monkey had become a total menace on the station and its surrounding area. On the station premises, he'd been raiding shops and stealing fruits from vendors. Locals and railway officials had told the Thane FD about his aggressive nature. FD had also set a cage near the station in-charge's cabin to trap the monkey. Santosh Kank, range forest officer from the Mumbai range of Thane FD had been following up the matter with his team members.

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