The six-year-old monkey, named Kalua, received a life sentence of solitary confinement at India’s Kanpur Zoo this week after repeated attempts at normalizing his behavior left zookeepers and other monkeys much the worse for wear. Zoo doctor Mohd Nasir told local media the savage simian would harm people if set free, saying “he remains as aggressive as he was” when first brought to the zoo three years ago.
According to reports, Kalua formerly belonged to an occultist in Mirzapur district, who fed him a diet of meat and plenty of alcohol. When his owner died, the monkey apparently went into withdrawal, becoming vicious and attacking locals.
By the time forest and zoo teams succeeded in apprehending the aggressive creature, he had bitten over 250 people, including 30 children – mostly female. One of his victims died of the injuries, while others were left in need of plastic surgery.
While the zookeepers had hoped to calm Kalua down, substituting a vegetarian diet for the human flesh he’d apparently come to rely on, they didn’t have much luck. The animal stayed hostile, especially toward female zookeepers, and plans to release him back into the wild as a changed monkey have now been permanently shelved.
Kalua’s misbehavior predates the coronavirus outbreak, but he’s not the only monkey in Uttar Pradesh to make the news in recent weeks.
A gang of monkeys attacked a lab technician in Meerut last month, stealing several blood samples taken from Covid-19 patients and running off with them in a scene that seemed lifted straight out of a Hollywood pandemic film.