Indian monkeys snatch coronavirus samples

(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)
  • Monkeys in India stole samples of coronavirus blood form a healhworker.
  • The samples were recovered and the three people whose sampls were stolen had to go for another coronavirus test.
  • India has become an emerging hotspot for coronavirus in recent days.


Monkeys mobbed an Indian health worker and made off with coronavirus test blood samples, spreading fears that the stealing simians could spread the pandemic in the local area.

Indian authorities often have to grapple with primates snatching food and even mobile phones.

After making off with the three samples earlier this week in Meerut, near the capital New Delhi, the monkeys scampered up nearby trees and one then tried to chew its plunder.

The sample boxes were later recovered and had not been damaged, Meerut Medical college superintendent Dheeraj Raj told AFP on Friday, after footage of the encounter went viral on social media.

"They were still intact and we don't think there is any risk of contamination or spread," Raj said.

He added that the three people whose samples were stolen were retested for the virus.

Coronavirus has been detected in animals, though there is no confirmation that the disease can then be passed on to humans.

India's coronavirus death toll passed neighbouring China's on Friday, with 175 new fatalities in 24 hours taking the total to 4 706, according to official data.

India, home to some of the world's most packed cities and a creaking healthcare system, is emerging as a new hotspot with record jumps in new cases in recent days.

In many rural areas, farmers lose crops to monkey populations and have demanded local governments' intervention to check their populations.

City authorities in New Delhi have famously used long-tailed langur monkeys to fight and scare away smaller primates from around the Indian Parliament.

Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Yes, they are hugely overpaid.
45% - 2237 votes
No, shareholders already have a say in what they get paid.
30% - 1494 votes
The focus should be on what workers get paid - SA's minimum wage should be lifted.
26% - 1290 votes
Vote
ZAR/USD
17.31
(+0.13)
ZAR/GBP
22.72
(-0.09)
ZAR/EUR
20.55
(-0.25)
ZAR/AUD
12.46
(-0.07)
ZAR/JPY
0.16
(+0.13)
Gold
2037.10
(+0.39)
Silver
26.93
(+2.92)
Platinum
969.00
(+3.85)
Brent Crude
44.34
(+0.63)
Palladium
2176.48
(+2.26)
All Share
57629.36
(+2.45)
Top 40
53279.30
(+2.56)
Financial 15
9928.97
(+0.51)
Industrial 25
76162.43
(+1.63)
Resource 10
59790.27
(+4.30)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes morningstar logo