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French colonialists decided to modernize French Indochina, especially its capital, Hanoi, in order to make it a symbol of France’s “civilising” mission in the country. The sewer network built by colonialists became a rats’ paradise, as there were no predators. The French administration decided to implement a bonus program for the general public, depending on how many rats each person killed. This caused massive concerns for the French as just a few years earlier, in 1894, Alexandre Yersin discovered the link between rats and the.