About Snake Cell
The Snake Cell – self-funded nature conservation project, is a unique natural history feature of the Tri-City (Chandigarh, Mohali, Panchkula). Almost, everyone adores its team and the efforts for snake rescue and nature conservation, which has won laurels from the denizens of the Tri-City. In fact, it has added a new chapter in the natural history scenario of India. The Snake Cell is a leading example of selfless service, devotion and passion for nature conservation education. The Snake Cell, a fledgling establishment, was commissioned on the World Environment Day in 1998, at Chandigarh to disseminate vital information on the subject `Snakes and Snakebite’ and about the role of snakes in maintaining ecological balance. The educational programmes of the Snake Cell also help to dispel the myths, fear and hatred which people have for these useful animals. Also, educating people about the prevention of snakebite, emergencies arising from snakebite and the management of snakebite victim and first-aid, which is very vital for the treatment.
It has continued its self-less service for more than a decade now; in spite of the discouraging events, such as Capt Suresh Sharma, team leader of the Snake cell, was attacked by some miscreants at night (no Police action was taken, the miscreants were related to some Police man) and attempted to snatch away the Snake Cell’s vehicle. Above all, on two occasions, very senior wildlife officers antagonised Capt Suresh, when he could not `obey orders’ to rush to do snake rescue, on grounds of his own illness. A few times, selfish and rude journalists wrote against the Snake Cell, when it could not render help for snake rescue for their relatives or friends, as if its a personal service owned by these very individuals. On many such occasions, Capt Sharma thought of suspending snake rescue operations and work only to educate people about snakes. But he has overlooked these `heart burns’ to continue to do snake rescue and disseminate information about snakes and snakebite to common man. Captain says, “It is hard to hold back, when people make SOS calls to seek Snake Cell’s help to rescue snakes from their houses, especially at night”.
People seek help from the Snake Cell to remove snakes from their premises. So far, we have caught about 1500 snakes from houses; often Common Krait (the deadliest Indian snake) which is 15 times more poisonous than a cobra. About 2500 houses were visited to attend calls to rescue snakes till this season.
Since its inception, Snake Cell has remained a self-funded project and has never been supported by any donations, except that a few friends and its well-wishers have extended their unflinching support to its endeavour when required.
It’s been a Free Service 24 Hours A Day, in around Chandigarh. Unfortunately, we had to discontinue our `rescue service.
We shall continue our mission to educate people about snakes and snakebite.