Personally, zoos have been on my not-too-fond of list because of the inadequate facilities for most of the animals and also because of moral and ethical candy floss I believe in. But winter holidays are all about visiting the zoo in large groups and carrying picnic baskets for the day’s adventure with wildlife on the loose at a distance. So to keep our holiday sentiments in tact while providing the best provisions for the fauna and more, the authorities have raised the bars.
On World Environment Day, Maharashtra government and the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) which is hopefully gonna change the tourism of the city by leaps and bounds!
The MoU transferred 100 acres out of 190 acres of Aarey Milk Colony in suburban Goregaon land to BMC for the purpose of establishing a neoteric zoo according to international standards. The MoU was validated in the presence of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, Maharashtra Forest and Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar, Mumbai Municipal Commissioner Praveen Pardeshi.
The zoo will house rare animals for both educational and entertainment purposes and you can also indulge in jungle, night and leopard safaris too. This 500-crore zoo project will also be a breeding centre for endangered species and there’ll be a stalwart supervision and care for the life here.
Environmentalist Stalin Dayanand has demanded that the land should be declared as a bio-reserve and it should be considered as a conservation zone and a wild-life rehabilitation area.
According to Maharashtra Forest and Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar, "People fly down to Mumbai but don’t spend much time here. They fly out to Goa, Bangalore and other places. But if such world-class facilities are created then the tourists are bound to stay longer and that will be beneficial for all. The project will create many job opportunities as well.”
Jokingly he also added that the project will not face any financial constraints as he had both vann (forest) as well as dhann (finance) departments with him this time for this venture. The proposed zoo will be the second one in the city and the existing one is also undergoing renovations for a better life for the inhabitants here.