ISLAMABAD- It is not an unusual phenomenon to witness the stray dogs, monkeys, porcupines and hoards of wild boars crossing the streets in Pakistani capital specially at night, however this time its snakes of various kinds that can be observed in abundance proving an open threat to the pedestrians.
The rise in the number of snakes in the capital is not any more restricted to its forestry or hilly areas like Margala hills, but now the snake population is spreading in the localities creating a wave of panic and fear.
Islamabad, the hilly locality with appearance of monsoon has forced these insects specially the snakes (sometimes venomous) to move out of underground and to enjoy capital’s beauty.
The eminent Margala hills in capital are already known for a home to various wild species from Monkeys, porcupines, wild boars, Scorpions, Lizards of various types, Jackals, stray dogs, tigers and dozens of bird species, however its specialty is the various sorts of small but sometimes venomous snakes.
Following the weather conditions, clipped with greenery in capital the snakes could be observed in bulk crawling around, mostly in deserted and adjacent areas of the Islamabad, even the name of Margala hills itself has been derived from Persian words Mar and Gala, where ‘Mar’ stands for snakes.
Out of these snakes some of them are highly venomous but not all of them; however their fear is enough to cause a human being with heart stroke specially when it’s not something common to watch them crawling in populated areas .
Normally due to fear, the people avoid intercepting these venomous insects; however their presence in bulk across capital itself is exposing locals to a great risk.
On the other hand the incidents of snakes bites are also on the rise, following which the hospitals are not focused for piling up their stocks for the anti-venom vaccines most of the time facing their shortage in the medicine stocks.
Barakahu, Humak, E-11, E-7, F-7, F-6, F-8, H-8, H-9, I-8 and Bari Imam are the major areas where these snakes could be found crawling.
Youhana 58, a Capital Development Authorities’ employee working as a sweeper told sources that it was not unusual to find wild boars on the roads in summer and wild snakes on the roads in current season.
“However from past few years, I feel that number of snakes is mounting up that could be harmful,”
Every week, told Youhana, 2-3 dead snakes could be observed in I-8 area that had been killed either by the pedestrians or sometimes some vehicle over ran them.
He pointed out that often the snakes could be spotted crawling across the premises of the H-8 graveyard, however they do not harm public unless someone makes them angry, adding that the snakes could be spotted in almost all grave yards of the capital as there exists plenty of eatables for them there.
Still the situation reflects that presence of snakes is a serious threat for the visitors of grave yards, as daily at-least 500 to 1000 people visits the graveyard and in case of some funeral or burial events the numbers of visitors gets multiply.
Pouring more information, Youhana told that in Monsoon and rain the snake population multiplies and the snakes came out of the soil, in hunt of their prey, often striking big animals, birds and sometimes even humans.
Not only limited till the graveyards, but snakebite incidents have been reported in the various areas of Margalla Hills, Damn-e-Koh and Monal, the hilly recreational places that always remain the prime attraction for the locals as well as visitors.