Monitor lizards tortured to death for their blood in Chennai

Chennai,Oct27:In an extremely disturbing video of animal cruelty going viral all across Chennai as well as other places since Tuesday, some people are seen drinking blood dripping from a monitor lizards throat that has been slit open.

The 1.18 minutes video that has animal activists shocked and up in arms has Forest department officials from Chennai initiating a search for the offenders. The monitor lizard is protected under Schedule I of the wildlife Protection Act, however it is regularly killed for its meat, blood and oil as its said to contain aphrodisiac properties as well as cure to several ailments, which has been rubbished by medical professionals.

 “I received the clip from social media on Monday that also specified the location of the incident as KK Nagar in Chennai where these gypsies were selling the blood. One can see that the red colour liquid is nothing but blood of a helpless monitor lizard whose neck has been slit,” shared animal activist Anthony Rubin from Chennai.

“Since a lot of faces can be easily identified from the video we are hopeful that forest department who is already chasing the offenders will be able to nab them as well as those consuming the blood,” said Rubin.

Another activist said the footage that has gone viral has the forest rangers looking for these people who belong to a tribe and are known to hunt monitor lizards and sell its meat and blood. “The practise is extremely cruel as the neck of a live monitor lizard is first slit and the blood is gradually collected as its also believed that drinking fresh blood has even more effects,” said the activist. According to wildlife experts, consuming the cooked flesh of the lizard or drinking its blood cures arthritis, muscular pains and is also considered an aphrodisiac.

Dr Vaishali Lokhande of Apollo Hospital claimed that, “The blood being consumed raw may lead to GI tract infection and of course the medicinal values of the flesh and blood was questionable,” adding that people consuming it could also be affected by toxins in case some gland is cut and mixed with blood.