JAMMU, SEPTEMBER 10-Minister for Forests, Ecology and Environment, Choudhary Lal Singh today laid foundation stone of Jambu Zoo (Shivalik Biological Park) at Khanpur in Nagrota.
The prestigious project shall be completed within two years over 5000 kanals of Wild Life Department’s land at an estimated cost of Rs. 120 crore.
MLA, Jammu East, Rajesh Gupta, Ex-MLA Basholi Kanta Andotra, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests A K Singh, Chairman JK Pollution Control Board Ravi Kesar, Chief Wild Life Warden Suresh Chug, Project Chief IWDP P K Singh, Director Social Forestry Anil Kumar Tikoo, Director Ecology, Environment and Remote Sensing O P Sharma, Chief Conservator of Forests Roshan Jaggi, Managing Director State Forest Corporation S K Gupta, Director Forest Protection Force Rajiiv Tiwari, Director SFRI B M Sharma besides other senior officers of Forest and its allied department including locals were present on the occasion.
After laying foundation stone of zoo at Khanpur, the Minister addressed the huge gathering and said that aim to construct the zoo in the area is to attract more tourists visiting the State.
The Minister said that project would be constructed on modern lines having all infrastructural facilities where the animals will be kept in moats and not in cages so that the visitors can see the animals in a natural environment. He said that the prestigious project will also have several facilities of tourist attraction like interpretation centre, parking lots, cafeteria, rest house, battery cars and zoo safari.
Choudhary Lal Singh issued directions to the Wild Life authorities to expedite the work particularly chain link fencing, construction of entry gate, parking lots besides carry out work of circular road and moats as per specification of Central Zoo Authority. The Minister also directed for plantation along the circular road.
Speaking on the occasion, MLA Jammu East, Rajesh Gupta said that the Zoo would attract more than pilgrims coming to Jammu for darshan of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine and other tourist destinations of the state . He said the Zoo would serve as added tourist attraction as many recreation amenities have been proposed in the project.
Later, the Minister and MLA also released ‘the J&K Envis Newsletter of the Wild Life Department.