Year-end holidays draw more crowd to Bannerghatta Park

Around Rs eight lakh earned as revenue on Christmas Day

The number of visitors to the Bannerghatta Biological park (BBP) has been on the rise due to year-end holidays.

On Christmas Day alone there were over 8,000 visitors to the Park, bringing in a revenue of nearly Rs eight lakh.

Though the BBP is closed on Tuesdays, the authorities decided to keep both the zoo and the safari open for public on New Year Day that falls on Tuesday.
With the rise in number of visitors, the safari is abuzz with vehicles bringing in visitors. The safari houses bear, lion, tiger and white tiger safaris are all separated by seven iron gates which are manually operated by workers, without a break, stationed near the gates.  

Shortage of staff

To avoid animal attacks, the standard practice is to open one gate at a time and allow a safari vehicle to enter. Only after that the second gate is opened.

Ideally, two persons have to be designated to handle the gates. However, in the last few weeks, the BBP has only one person assigned at each of the gates.

The situation is such that the workers are not even allowed to take a break, either to visit toilet or for lunch. As only one person is stationed at each of the gates, even in case of an animal attack or a medical emergency they will not be able to seek help. Their situation is rendered more precarious, as they cannot be contacted with a walkie-talkie or any other mode of communication.

On shortage of workers at the BBP, Shankare Gowda, Range Forest Officer, admitted that there was shortage of workers, as a few among 43 workers in the safari have been diverted to carry out other miscellaneous work.

Infrastructure projects

“A number of infrastructure projects are being carried out in the BBP and the safari which calls for additional manpower. As a result we had to divert a few of these workers posted at the gates. The situation is accentuated during holidays, when there is more number of people thronging the park. Soon, we will ensure that two workers are posted at the gates,” he added.

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