NewZNew (Chattbir/S A S Nagar) : More than 15 percent area in Punjab state will be covered under Forests which is only 6 percent at present. Wildlife protection can only be ensured by increasing the forest areas. This was state by Minister Forest & Wildlife Preservation Mr. Chunni Lal Bhagat while addressing the state level function on completion of wildlife Protection week.
Before this forest & wildlife Preservation Minister Mr. Chunni Lal Bhagat laid the foundation stone for Nature Interpretation Centre and planted a sapling. Besides this an exhibition organised by various Punjab govt. departments to promote various allied occupations was also inaugurated by him. Addressing the gathering he said that the nature interpretation centre will get completed within one year. This centre will be having various glimpses of wildlife. He said that Rs. 8 crore 7 lacs will be spent for various development works at Chattbir Zoo which will include beautification work for main entrance of the zoo. Besides this, renovation of internal roads will also be done. Parks will be upgraded & new shelters will be provided for the visitors.
Mr. Chunni Lal Bhagat said that people should come forward for security & preservation of wildlife & endangered species. He said Zoo Development Societies have been formed to ensure smooth functioning at Zoos in Punjab State and in cooperation with Zoo Authority Bird Aviary scheme has been got approved. During this special honour was given to Mr. Bant Singh Village Paprali, Mr. Nikhil Sagar Nawa Shehar, Forest Guard Mr. ParamPal Singh, Mr. Ram Darshan Bishnoi Abohar for their contribution towards wildlife security and Saint John High School Chandigarh was honoured for adopting maximum number of animals at Chattbir Zoo.
During this Prinmcipal Secretary Forest & Wild Life Security Department Punjab Mr. Vishavjeet Khanna said that this Chattbir Zoo is widely spread as compared to Delhi Zoo & number of animals are almost double. He said that during the Wildlife Protection Week, a number of visitors came here and now it will be developed as a place of tourist interest. Addressing the gathering Principle Chief Conservator of Forests Punjab Sh. Kuldeep Kumar IFS said that forest area can be increased in cooperation with general public and during the current year 1 crore 60 lacs new trees have been planted. He urged that people should take care of trees & plants as their moral responsibility. During this Chief Wildlife Warden Punjab Mr.. Dhirendera Singh explained about the works carried out by Punjab Govt. towards wild life security. He said that Bir Talab Zoo at Bathinda has been upgraded by providing a guest house, interpretation centre & veterinary care centre. Besides this a wildlife safari will also be provided at there.
Gathering was also addressed by Chief Conservator of Forests Punjab Sh. Dharminder Sharma. During this Chairperson Punjab State Forest Development Corporation Smt. Reena Jaitly, Director Chattbir Zoo Mr. Manish Kumar IFS and other officials were present. During the program SDM MOhali Mr. Lakhmir Singh recited a poem on environment protection and got appreciated by the gathering. During the program a Skit by kids of Genious World School was staged & cultural program was presented by kids of Bridge of Hope School.