In a scary protest, an aggrieved snakecharmer dumped a dozen snakes inside a revenue office in this district in Uttar Pradesh triggering panic among the staff.
The hapless staff at the office of the revenue inspector in Haraiyan tehsil in Basti district climbed atop tables for cover while some scurried out to the exit door to make good their escape from the slithering reptiles.
Officials said the snake charmer named Hakkul was agitated and let loose the two to three feet snakes yesterday since he alleged that the revenue department staff was demanding money for allotment of land.
TV footages showed there were three to four cobras with raised hood among the snakes. Some snakes even started climbing up the tables and chairs.
Several people armed with sticks gathered outside the room watching the protest drama unfold.
An official said no one was bitten or injured in the incident.
Hakkul said he used to catch snakes and conserve them.
He claimed that for conservation work he had written a letter to President Pratibha Patil to allot additional land after which the state government last year directed the local administration to complete the required formalities.
Hakkul, however, alleged that revenue department officials were demanding money and that if he did not oblige the matter will be kept pending.
Sub-Divisional magistrate Ranvijay Singh said the snake charmer's complaint has been taken cognisance of and land would be allotted to him soon.
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