Published On : Wed, Aug 19th, 2015

Nagpanchmi Special : Snakes being killed for superstition; foresters hunt for snake charmers!


Nagpur: Come Nagpanchmi every year and here we hear laud mouthed claims of preserving species of serpentines. Again the role of forest department is talked about and then the entire issue gets packed in pitaara (chest) for another Nagpanchmi to come. Every news and media house doesn’t need to work too much on the information as every year it comes with no update.

However the grim situation remains the same as most of the snakes in the remote and rural areas are being killed under superstition. Snakes are being killed and garlands of its bones are being made to lure the people into fulfilling their wishes, sources informed.

On the contrary the forest department will only keep a tab on the snake charmers, who move around city displaying snakes on the occasion of Nagpanchami. Special teams have been set up for this. Alert was sounded from Nagpur divisional office (vigilance) to flying squads and patrolling parties at Wardha, Bhandara, Gondia and Nagpur. According to forest department officials, cobra snake comes in Schedule-1 animal due to which it is crime to use cobra for demonstration. In 2013, one snake charmer was arrested by the team of forest department for showing cobra snake. Since them number of snake charmers on Nag Panchami day has gone down.
According to divisional forest officer (vigilance)PDMasram, snake show is offence. Snake charmers physically torture snakes and display them. Such demonstrations have been banned now. Accused in this case can be sent to jail term of 3 years.

Severe shortage of venom antidote
There has been a severe dearth of anti-snake venom serum in city hospitals. These are used to save lives against snake bite. Even the private medical shops too are running short of this antidote, following which the patients are left to suffer.