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When you see a monkey, 'avoid eye contact, don't tease them': Advice to MPs

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New Delhi, Nov 13: On Monday, the Lok Sabha Secretariat issued an advisory to visitors and its staff on ways to protect themselves from monkeys roaming in the premises.

The Lok Sabha secretariat's move came in the wake of Naidu's call for solutions in Rajya Sabha in July. Naidu made the comments after an MP was 'late to Parliament' as he was held up by monkeys.

Representational Image

The circular asks parliamentarians not to "make eye contact" with the simians and "not to run" while passing monkey groups. Moreover, if a vehicle (two-wheeler specifically) collides with a monkey, "do not stop there." Feeding the monkeys is obviously off-limits, as is "teasing" them.

"Ignore the monkey and walk away calmly," reads the circular.

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Loud noises also compel the monkeys to leave any premises, it further adds.

Leave them alone and they will leave you alone", among others. It also urged people to "not get scared if a monkey makes a 'kho-kho' noise as normally, it is a bluff."

In July, vice- president M Venkaiah Naidu, who is also the chairperson of the Rajya Sabha said his official residence is not unaffected by the simian problem that the rest of the city complains about and that the government should find a solution for it.

The issue had caught international attention in 2014 after nearly 40 men, dressed in ape suits (like langurs), were hired to drive away the macaques from Parliament House. Had the ape-people failed, rubber bullets guns were to be deployed in the fight against the adversary, Naidu had said. He was the Union Minister for Urban Development at the time.

Congress MP Mani Shankar Aiyar had, after being appointed a minister in 2004, refused to move into his allotted bungalow on Kamaraj Marg as the long-unoccupied house had become a night shelter for monkeys.

In 2012, then finance minister Pranab Mukherjee had complained that the monkeys were ravaging his home-grown pumpkins.

Monkey menace had become rampant at the Tis Hazari court too, due to people feeding the animals in the complex. The rampaging simians had damaged court documents and even chewed on the electricity cables. The court's administrative officials had to then direct litigants and other visitors to not feed the monkeys.

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