With a large number of juvenile snakes and snake eggs having recently been found in different regions of Rajshahi, the authorities of Rajshahi Medical College Hospital (RMCH) have taken extra precautionary steps to reduce panic among the people.
On Monday night, at least 18 baby cobras and 45 eggs were killed or destroyed in the district’s Tanore and Durgapur upazillas, while 402 cobras have been killed nationwide in two and half months.
In light of panic among the people as a result of the increasing number of snakes, RMCH authorities have applied to the central pharmacy in Dhaka to procure 1,500 additional vials of anti-venom for treatment of snake bite victims.
Dr Ali Akbar, senior store officer of RMCH, said the number of snake bite victims increases during the rainy season.
“Therefore, an application demanding 1,500 vials of snake anti-venom has been submitted so that problems can be avoided when providing treatment to patients suffering from snake bites,” Akbar said.
Dr Akbar added that 500 vials of anti-venom had been stored before the monsoon, but the number of snake bite patients was increasing since the beginning of the rainy season.
“Already 300 vials have been used, with only 200 vials of anti-venom currently in stock,” he said.
Dr Akbar further said it usually takes 10 to 20 vials of anti-venom to cure each snake bite victim, adding that it may take more if the patient arrives late. At RMCH, there is at least one example of a snake bite patient requiring 60 vials.
“Snake bite patients need immediate treatment, and the only treatment is the anti-venom. Patients do not need other medicine, but if the anti-venom is administered late, then the risk of death increases,” Dr Akbar said.
However, the doctor also asked people not to panic as there was an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) in the hospital to provide life support for patients.
Meanwhile on Monday night, eight baby cobras were found in a cow-shed owned by one Arifuzzaman, at Kolma village under Tanore upazila in Rajshahi. The snakes were killed when they came out of their hole.
Arifuzzaman said: “The residents of my house were panicked on Monday night when the baby snakes came out of a hole in the cow-shed. The snakes were killed and buried under the ground.”
“Panic has been spreading across the village after the incident,” he added.
In addition, 10 more cobras were found along with 45 eggs from a snake hole at the veranda of a house owned by one Abdul Aziz at Haripur village under Durgapur upazila of the district on the same night. The snakes were killed and eggs destroyed.
Abdul Aziz said that he saw a cobra in his veranda around 12am. Sensing his presence, the snake entered the hole, where the 10 baby cobras and 45 eggs were found.
“The snakes were killed by burning and the eggs were destroyed,” Aziz said.
Earlier on Monday evening, at least 30 cobras were killed and 45 eggs destroyed from the premises of one Robiul Islam’s residence in Hoja village in the same upazila, while 28 cobras were killed at Majdar Ali’s residence at Budhpara in the Rajshahi Metropolitan area on July 4.
On July 6, 125 cobra snakes were found along with 13 eggs at one Akkas Ali’s residence at Vodrokh village in Tanore upazila. All the baby snakes and eggs were destroyed.