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A true friend of simians

J.B.S.Umanadh


Moved by the plight of hungry monkeys in the Narsapur forest, Gopal feeds them bananas every Thursday


Photo: Mohd. Arif

Good samaritan: Monkeys being fed bananas by Gopal.

Narsapur (Medak dt.): He saw what hundreds of travellers on the Hyderabad-Narsapur-Medak road have not seen. Allapalli Chinappa Gopal, a native of Anantapur district and resident of S.R.Nagar in Hyderabad, during one of his business visits saw that hundreds of monkeys that live in the deciduous forest of Narsapur are facing severe shortage of drinking water and food. The reason was the check dams that help retain the rainwater were empty . A staunch devotee of Shirdi Saibaba, Gopal used to offer bread, biscuits and fruits to the poor and the aged free near most of the Sai temples in Hyderabad on every Thursday. Instead of that he wanted to do something for these hungry simians.

Deeply moved

Speaking to The Hindu, Gopal said he was moved at the plight of the hungry monkeys that wait for someone to throw food from the moving buses. He made a decision five years ago to feed them on every Thursday and has been doing it ever since.

He started purchasing bananas from the fruit markets in Hyderabad for feeding the monkeys. “I bring at least 300 dozens of bananas every Thursday morning for the monkeys,” he said. The monkeys recognize their friend just by looking at the Maruti Omni that Gopal purchased for this purpose. From Gummadidala to Narsapur the monkeys mob the van and take their share of bananas in a friendly manner.

Fund for simians

However, Gopal is not satisfied. He wants to do more for the monkeys. Gopal who spends almost Rs 5,000 on every Thursday now wants to feed the monkeys throughout the year.

For this,he is planning to set up an institution by allocating Rs. 50 lakh as corpus fund from his business. Gopal who brings his family members to the forest here along with him once in a while is happy that a considerable number of animal lovers from the twin cities have started bringing food for the monkeys.

However, Gopal is equally concerned about the increasing number of labourers who have started waiting for him every Thursday for the same bananas.

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