The night safari and the rescue centre was commissioned by chief minister Devendra Fadnavis.
Nagpur: In a development sure to give impetus to zoo tourism in Maharashtra, the forest department has issued tenders for private parties to develop an international standard zoo and rescue centre in Nagpur, just 7 km away from the zero mile stone or the centre of India. The project will have a bio-park, day and night safari (Indian and African), walking trails, wildlife reserve, wild animal rescue centre and entertainment hub.
The night safari and the rescue centre was commissioned by chief minister Devendra Fadnavis last month. The development comes at least 10 years after it was first announced on December 2005. The actual process to set it up, however, started only in 2001. Also, the required permissions from the Central Zoo Authority (CZA) and Supreme Court were obtained in 2014 and 2015, which further delayed the project.
The state government plans to implement the zoo project on Design, Build, Finance, Operate and Transfer basis for a period of 50 years, including the construction period of four years.
“This will be the first project in India to have night safari facilities on lines of those in foreign countries, such as Singapore,” said minister for finance and forests Sudhir Mungantiwar. He said the works would be fully scaled up in around four months, and water bodies, adventure sports, hotels and theatres will be developed there along with signature pieces of architecture.
According to the government officials, Gorewada lake is a haven for many residents and migratory bird species. Quality tourist attractions, such as a butterfly park, African safari, bird park and bio-park will be set up, apart from a rail tour and a wildlife museum. Walking tracks and tribal village trails will give tourists an authentic experience, the officials added.