Assam Assembly has canine problem!

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Guwahati, Nov 16 (UNI) Dogs are not always a man's best friend and the Assam Assembly Speaker will vouch for that.

Speaker Tanka Bahadur Rai is a worried man as MLAs cutting across party lines today complained how stray dogs within the Assembly and Secretariat complex were making their lives miserable.

''Morning walks and other outdoor activities are hampered by over 80 dogs,'' said some legislators.

Rai agreed, for the canine species have been bothering him in the corridors of the Assembly.

''I have had to endure a dog vomitting in the corridor,'' he said.

No sooner did State Veterinary Minister Khorsing Engti assure action through a team of officials than the issue of monkey menace cropped up.

Asom United Democratic Front legislator Guneshwar Das pointed out how the primates were specifically attacking women and children in Raha, the constituency in Nagaon district he represents.

Congress representative from Mangaldoi Binanda Saikia joined in, giving an account of how apes have gone 'mobile' zeroing in on cellphones in the hands of passersby. Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, too, complained of monkey menace in his Jalukbari constituency.

Forest Minister Rockybul Hussain conceded that the problem had reached an alarming proportion across the state. ''We constituted a committee yesterday to look into the problem,'' he promised. The committee is headed by senior forest officer RP Agarwala.

''The Rhesus macaques are causing problems in this city too,'' said Zoo DFO Narayan Mahanta, who is also in the anti-monkey committee.

Residents near the Zoo, which is close to the Assembly, have also been complaining of diseases transmitted from the primates, he added.


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