It is a known fact that every December the President of India arrives in Hyderabad to stay at the Rashtrapathi Nilayam near Bolarum Secunderabad and as usual even this time it is becoming challenging for authorities to address the snake menace! The Rashtrapathi Nilayam is inhabited by snakes and other reptiles due to its fruit and ornamental gardens spread across 90-acres.
Sources say that yesterday around 11 am, a seven-foot long cobra and a rat snake were caught by snake-charmers. While another two cobras were trapped in the sprawling Rashtrapati Nilayam few hours before and after the arrival of President Pranab Mukherjee. This followed the capture of a eight-foot long cobra. This was spotted in the Herbal Garden around 10.30 pm yesterday night.
Unlike zoo officials who are armed with gloves, the snake-charmers here reportedly go about their jobs with just a stick. Sources say to ensure that no snakes came in the way of the President; two well known snake-charmers accompanied Pranab during his morning walk on Friday. Earlier they had caught a nine-foot viper in 2009 when the then President Pratibha Patil was taking her evening walk.