Major facelift for water body at Madarihat

kolkata: The Alipurduar district administration has restored Biswakarma Jhora (water body) at Madarihat block and will now sustainably develop the place as a bio-diversity park.

"The Biswakarma Jhora that has been restored through MGNREGS has generated livelihood opportunities for many inhabitants residing in the periphery of the Biswakarma Jhora. Now, the Jhora is also being sustainably developed as a biodiversity park," Surendra Kumar Meena, district magistrate, Alipurduar said.

The restored Biswakarma Jhora, also known locally as Padma Pukur, has already started getting many feathered visitors such as Cormorants, Lesser Whistling Ducks, River Lapwings. The feathered visitors and the variety of flowers laid around the pond has completely changed the once derelict pond. The Jhora has been connected with a 600-m canal where the district administration will arrange boating facilities for the tourists. Work for a butterfly garden and beautification with plantation as per advice of the state Horticulture department is also going on.

An excavation of pond beside Biswakarma Jhora, which will be an extension of the same, will be converted to Matsya Abhay Ashram, wherein species of fishes indigenous to Dooars will be reared for ex-situ conservation.

The total cost of the entire project, which is aimed at developing a prime tourist attraction, will be around Rs 47 lakh. The place being very close to Jaldapara National Park already has a number of homestays in and around it.

The district administration will also take up bee keeping at the site.

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