HYDERABAD: This is the peak season for winged-insect activity but a trip to Hyderabad’s perhaps only Butterfly Park tells a different story. Unlike the past years, there are very few butterflies fluttering around in the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation’s (GHMC) park on Necklace Road this year. This is because there has been only one caretaker for the last five months, instead of a full-fledged team of gardeners, to maintain the park’s flowers and foliage.
According to a source, all the contract workers were fired during the lockdown as the Telangana government was unable to pay their salaries. The grass had over grown and the flowering plants, which attract butterflies, dried up. However, after five months, the GHMC recently hired two contract workers to maintain the park and the ‘winged jewels’ are returning but the numbers remain low.
“We hope to see more butterflies once the new flowering saplings grow and blossom. The number of butterflies in the park reduced drastically as it lacked nectar plants,” one of the workers said. “It takes no time for butterflies to fly away but they take months to return,” he said.
Neglected for long
The park remained closed for visitors since 2016 after the HMDA inaugurated a butterfly garden at Sanjeevaiah Park. Later in 2019, after several news reports highlighted the plight of the park, it was reopened for the public. When this Express correspondent visited the Butterfly Park recently, a host of saplings had been freshly planted and a few common butterfly species were seen. But according to a worker, “When the park was well-maintained earlier, (before the garden at Sanjeevaiah Park was opened) there were more butterflies than flowers and enough workers to maintain it”.