Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday inaugurated the Japanese garden at Eco Park by pressing a button at a function held at Netaji Indoor Stadium.
State Urban development minister Firhad Hakim was present there at Eco Park during the inauguration. "Such project reflects strong bonding between Bengal and Japan," Hakim said.
Mamata Banerjee also launched a museum at the residence of Mahasweta Devi at the function in Netaji Indoor Stadium. The Magsaysay award winning litterateur died in July 2016. The mementos and gifts she had received from scholars, litterateurs and common people have been displayed in the museum. The manuscripts of her books and some of the articles which she used are on display. Mahasweta Devi was a like a guardian to Mamata Banerjee who had supported Banerjee's movements in Singur and Nandigram.
The Japanese garden which was inaugurated on Tuesday has come up on 3.5 acre of land. Earlier, experts of Japan had also visited the garden and expressed their satisfaction. Debashis Sen, chairman, Housing Infrastructure Development Corporation (HIDCO) had told the Chief Minister when she had visited Eco Park on Monday, that officials of China and Korea had also approached the agency to develop a space to showcase the rich culture and heritage of their countries.
There is a wish pond at the Japanese garden along with a pagoda. The entire area has been illuminated in a special way to create the ambiance. A restaurant has been set up to serve Japanese food. A restaurant which has an outlet in south Kolkata has bagged the contract. The Eco Park, renamed Prakriti Tirtha by Mamata Banerjee has become a major tourist attraction in Bengal with around 55 lakh people both from the country and abroad visiting it since its inception four years ago.
There is a huge water body covering more than 100 acre where people take part in boating. Café Ekante, a restaurant named by Banerjee has also become quite popular among the foodies. There is also a house boat restaurant which is one-of-its-kind in the state. People visiting Japanese garden will have a taste of Japan and its rich culture and heritage. The pagoda has been constructed brilliantly. It may be mentioned that there is a pagoda in the Eden Gardens which was built more than a century ago.