Lion safari at Ambardi too
Times of India By Himanshu Kaushik
One Can Now Go For A Lion Safari And Move To Diu Without Going To Junagadh & Kodinar
Diu, Gir and Tulshishayam have drawn closer. Not geographically, though. The Central government has recently approved another entry into the last abode of Asiatic lions, through Ambardi interpretation zone in Amreli district.
The second interpretation zone will be on the similar lines as that of Devaliya near Sasan. Officials said someone wanting to see Asiatic lions and then move to Diu was earlier forced to take a longer route as he had to go to Junagadh, Sasan, Kodinar and then Diu. But with Ambardi developed, one can go to Amreli and from there head to Kodinar via Tulsishyam which would be a shorter route.
Officials said the Central government has announced a package of Rs 5 crore for Tourism Gujarat Corporation Limited (TGCL) and Gujarat State Forest Department was to spend another Rs 5.26 crore to set up another Asiatic lion safari in Ambardi area.
The Central Zoo Authority of India has already granted its permission in this regard.
This will promote ecotourism in Amreli district which touches the eastern border of the Gir forest. The second entry is located 3 km away from Dhari on Amreli Road. The present site is just 60 km from Diu.
Officials said this was a good site as it would shorten the route to Diu for those wanting to see the lion and head for Diu. There are many reasons behind selecting this site, good water resources being one of them, as the site is near a Khodiyar dam. They said it would draw tourists visiting Tulshishyam and Diu.
Officials said that the Centre had cleared the project but the gujarat government was delaying it for want of funds. The revised proposal which the forest department has sent to the state finance department was of Rs 14 crore. This was because of the escalation of costs. Officials said the new interpretation zone would have a cafeteria, a reception centre, theatre and parking facilities for the visitors.
They said that this proposal was rejected thrice by the Centre, but the Gujarat government pursued and finally the Centre approved the project. The state government had already declared this area as a reserved forest area.
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