HC asks for importing vaccine to check monkey population

New Delhi, Jan 16 : The Delhi High Court on Tuesday asked the Central government to look into the feasibility of importing immunocontraception vaccines on an "emergency basis" to control the population of monkeys in the capital.

A division bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C.

Hari Shankar asked the government to take "emergency measures" to control the monkey menace in the city.

The court's direction came after it was told by the National Institute of Immunology (NII) that development of immunocontraception vaccine will need five years and thereafter two years for trial.

The high court was told that import of immunocontraceptive vaccine -- extensively used in other countries, especially the African continent -- is expensive and may not be financially viable.

The bench remarked that the scenario will get worse as monkeys continue to procreate and unchecked rise in population of monkeys was an emergency situation.

The court was hearing a plea filed by Delhi residents 18 years ago.

It said the problem was not restricted to Delhi and that it was a pan-India issue, asking Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Jain to personally look into it to ensure funds for acquiring vaccine from abroad on an "emergency basis".

Many of the 20,000 simians relocated to Asola-Bhatti Wildlife Sanctuary near Tughalaqabad in Delhi have escaped to surrounding areas leading to complaints from residents, the court observed.

The bench, which has been monitoring the progress made to ensure a proper place for survival of the monkeys, posted the case for further hearing on February 2.



Source: IANS