are a group of committed citizens (technocrats, social activists,
animal lovers & environmentalists), who have got together to
try and save the ever diminishing Sanjay Gandhi National Park
(SGNP) or Borivili National Park. This park is one of the smallest
natural wild life parks in India but is unique in the world as it
is the only such a wild life park, which is so close to such a large
metropolis anywhere in the world.
In fact, it is the only lung of Mumbai, without which this city
would have become one of the most polluted in the world. At
the same time being a wild life sanctuary so close to a bludgeoning
city, there are intense pressures from various quarters notably
the illegal encroachers. In fact, today this has become one of the
major problems of the park, which has resulted in repeated man animal
conflicts resulting in several human casualties and the trapping
of over three fourths of the total number of leopards in the park.
While the SGNP must be saved from environmental decay and all sorts
of problems, it can also become a revenue generator and enhance
the tourism prospects for the city, something that should elicit
great interest to all concerned.
We sincerely feel that we should all get together and work
out a solution that not only saves the park but also restores it
to its pristine position.
Our plan envisages the creation of a zoological park along
side the SGNP which in turn will generate huge revenue (like other
such state-of-the-art zoological parks throughout the world) and
would give the state ample reason to take proper care of the park.
As regards the Jijamata Udyan Zoo we would like to advise that it
is a very small zoo and would not meet the standard requirements
of modern day zoos. The area is hardly 52 acres of which nearly
20 acres is utilised in the front and back portion housing a heritage
museum, a playground, a bungalow for the zoo in-charge and a veterinary
section. This leaves hardly 25 acres for the wild animals. Even
if the BMC gets possession of the 20 acres area of the
Mafatlal Mills, it would not suffice. Instead, we would suggest
that we develop the Jijamat Udyan into a proper, verdant botanical
garden with of course some herbivores and birds around which will
not only add to its scenic beauty but also become a veritable "green
patch" for our concrete city. The other animals can be moved
to the SGNP in a zoo that will be part of a larger zoological and
wild life park.
We have prepared a preliminary PPP on this concept. We have
a very composite solution to the zoo and also to the SGNP namely
creating a world class zoological park alongside the existing wildlife
park and a botanical park-cum-zoo at the present park where the
landscaping will concentrate more on the greening of the area than
on the wildlife.
would be our pleasure to make this presentation to concerned people
so that we can build up a general consensus amongst our citizens
for saving this wonderful gift nature has bestowed only on our city.
short our proposal is all about
an eco friendly International scale wild life / zoological park
tourist traffic to the city of Mumbai
huge additional revenue for the city of Mumbai and also for the
state of Maharashtra
a physical boundary between the people and the animals and adding
more animals to the SGNP
the forest cover and increasing it
conservation and improving the city's water resources
an environment friendly luxuriant botanical park within the city,
to augment its rapidly depleting green cover
THE MUMBAI ZOO AND NATURE PARK INITIATIVE
RELE) (T. M.
send all correspondence to: Shri Sameer Banerjee, "Parnakuti",
164/A Dr. Ambedkar Road, Dadar, Mumbai - 400 014.
Tel: 2414 3590, 2418 3594. Fax: 2411 4749.