Minister asks Zoo to prepare DPR for world-class aquarium
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Minister asks Zoo to prepare DPR for world-class aquarium

June 11, 2024

Zoo in the process of identifying transaction advisors to prepare DPR after studying technical & financial feasibility

Bengaluru: It’s official now. The State Government has unveiled its plans to establish a world-class aquarium project at the Mysuru Zoo (Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens), which has been in limbo for over 12 years. The Government is committed to launching the project under the Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) model.

Chairing the 156th meeting of the Zoo Authority of Karnataka held yesterday at Vikasa Soudha in Bengaluru, Minister for Forest, Ecology and Environment Eshwar B. Khandre directed the officials to prepare a Detailed Project Report (DPR) on the neglected aquarium located between the Mysuru Zoo and Karanji Lake Nature Park.

It may be recalled here that on May 22, 2024, Star of Mysore published a report titled ‘Fresh attempt to revive Zoo aquarium project’ where it was mentioned that the Zoo authorities are scouting to select transaction advisors or consultancies to prepare the DPR after studying the technical and financial feasibility of the Rs. 45-crore project.

The meeting decided to introduce a new camera combo ticket at Mysuru Zoo and Karanji Lake Nature Park. The charges are set at Rs. 150 for a still camera and Rs. 300 for a video camera.

Proposals to attract more tourists

The meeting also reviewed measures to attract more tourists to various zoos in the State and increase revenue. To address the shortage of wildlife veterinarians in zoos and prevent the death of zoo animals due to infectious diseases, the appointment of veterinarians and the use of local veterinary doctors’ services for the Aadu Malleswara Mini Zoo in Chitradurga were approved.

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Proposals for the acquisition of 13.20 acres of land for the expansion and development of Gadag Zoo, as well as the provision of mid-day meals to zoo staff at a nominal rate, were also approved. For the benefit of the animals and tourists at Bannerghatta Biological Park in Bengaluru, the Government has authorised the supply of Cauvery water from the Bengaluru Water Supply and Sewerage Board.

Medical scheme for staff

Moreover, a proposal to cover medical expenses according to Central Government Health Scheme (CGHS) rates for 153 staff working on direct contracts in Bannerghatta Biological Park, earning above Rs. 21,000 per month, was approved. The Minister also suggested starting a leopard safari by the end of this month, alongside the existing lion and tiger safaris at Bannerghatta Biological Park.

He emphasised the need to examine the concept study and feasibility report of freshwater and saltwater aquariums in the Bannerghatta Biological Park on a PPP model. He proposed that aquariums be developed according to global standards. Additionally, steps should be taken to turn the Vulture Conservation Breeding Centre within the Bannerghatta National Park into a satellite centre of Bannerghatta Biological Park.

Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Wildlife), Subhash Malkhade, and other officials attended the meeting. The gathering concluded with discussions on future initiatives and strategies to enhance the overall visitor experience and conservation efforts across the State’s zoos.

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