Tiruchy to house TN’s fifth zoo over 30-hectare land

Proposal to finally see light as Central Zoo Authority gives nod; draft masterplan ready

Published: 23rd February 2022 06:52 AM  |   Last Updated: 23rd February 2022 06:52 AM   |  A+A-

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Express News Service

CHENNAI: The decade-old proposal to establish a zoological garden in Tiruchy has finally come to fruition. The Central Zoo Authority (CZA) has given its approval for building Tiruchy Zoo, a fifth such facility in Tamil Nadu, which will come up in an area of about 30 hectares. 

Sonali Ghosh, Deputy Inspector General of Forest, CZA has sent the formal communication to State Chief Wildlife Warden on February 18.   N Satheesh, Chief Conservator of Forests, Tiruchy circle, told TNIE a draft master plan has been sent to CZA, who raised about 20 queries for which replies are being readied. “Since the zoo area is falling inside reserve forest area, the process is on to obtain clearance under Forest Conservation Act, 1980,” he said. 

Meanwhile, the CZA approval is subject to several conditions which includes State government allocations and sufficient funds to sustain the construction and operation of the zoo. Although some preliminary work was carried out earlier, the project was shelved due to paucity of funds.

The State Environment and Forests Department has been asked to ensure requisite number of qualified and experienced people are available for preparing the detailed plan for the zoo’s establishment. “Subsequent to the approval of the master plan for long term development of the zoo, approval for the construction of enclosures for endangered species shall be sought from the CZA.

The State Environment and Forests Department shall also ensure that no resources from existing zoos should be reappropriated for the Tiruchy zoo and no animals from the wild are acquired for display. Once compliance with the conditions for establishment of the zoo is achieved and it is ready for operation, appreciation in Form-I for recognition shall be filed with the CZA,” Sonali Ghosh said. 

Chief Wildlife Warden Shekhar Kumar Niraj said establishing Tiruchy zoo comes with challenges, especially the availability of fresh water. The proposed site is located in a water-stressed area and we are having a proposal to build a canal to draw water from the Cauvery river. Also, the area has only one dominant tree species - Hardwickia binata. “We need to have a mixed forest to improve green cover,” he said.



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