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Zoological park work held up for want of govt funds

Image result for M R palayam zooWith the work on the first phase of the much-anticipated zoological park at Trichy over, the forest department has been awaiting funds to the tune of Rs 7 crore to take the project further. A proposal from the forest department seeking the funds is pending before the state government since April.
While the basic facilities have been set up on about 30 hectares of forest land along the Chennai bypass near M R Palayam in Trichy, the second phase is crucial for providing vital infrastructure for the park. Located 32 kms away from the city, the forest department had proposed to convert the M R Palayam reserve forest into a zoo in 2010.
With ample deer population in the region, a deer park was proposed initially. A wildlife survey census consolidated the fact while giving proof of enough mammal population for establishing a zoo zone.

However, later it was decided to convert it into a zoological park and zoos across the country were requested to send in their surplus animals. After various rounds of deliberations, it was decided to restrict the area to 30 hectares in 2014 and work started with the sanctioning of Rs 2.4 crore to create basic infrastructure.
A senior official from the forest department told TOI that the zoological park had been designed to have 17 types of amenities at an estimated cost of Rs 60 crore. Demarcation of boundaries, fencing, entrance arch, pictorial sign boards, water facilities through borewells and an overhead tank with a capacity of 24,000 litres were established in the first phase. Besides, four enclosures to accommodate wild animals has also been created.
"While the work got over a few weeks ago, the next phase would only start after the state government sanctions funds for the second phase," said the official. He said that the entire design was to be carried out in a circular pattern with the enclosures located on the circumference and the visitors will be viewing the animals from the centre in a circular pattern.
Each of the enclosures is being designed in such a way for the animals to adapt to the surroundings and climate, he added. The zoo will have veterinary centres, watchtowers, canteens, parking lots and other commercial establishments to cater to the citizens.


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