Agra, June 30 (IANS) Swarms of locusts darkened the Agra skyline late Monday evening. creating panic and scare as people fled the markets and took cover in closed spaces.
The indications during the day were that the swarms of locusts would bypass Agra and head northwards. But the unwanted winged guests found the Taj city hospitality worth a try. Swarms were seen hovering over the white marble mausoleum, the Taj Mahal for a while before, they invaded the city.
People in rural areas were out with drums and ‘thalis’ to shoo away the locusts with noise. “Whole night they were hovering around and we could not open doors and windows to let in fresh air. In the morning we had to collect a bumper harvest of half dead and alive locusts,” said Vijay Nagar colony resident Sudhir Gupta.
Not all have as yet left. Within the city the worst affected was the sprawling 70 acre green lung, the Paliwal Park. The greenery provided enough food and nutrition to the millions of locusts.
A farmer in the Barauli Ahir block said, “Whole night many of us were in the fields beating drums to ward off the locusts from settling on our fields.”
Official sources said, the swarms have left the Agra district for the moment. The actual extent of damage was being studied in the rural areas.