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SAIL-operated zoo in Bhilai re-opens for public after 11 months

Abhishek Sonkar
·2-min read

New Delhi, Feb 14 (PTI) Maitri Bagh, the zoo-cum-children's park maintained by the country's largest steel maker SAIL at Bhilai in Chhattisgarh, has been re-opened for public from Saturday.

The zoo was closed since March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

'The zoo has been closed for 11 months. It has been re-opened following the permission of the district administration,' zoo incharge N K Jain told PTI.

However, children below the age of 12 years and elders of 65 years and above have not been granted permission to visit the place.

Jain said the permission has been granted only to those above the age of 12 and below 65 years of age.

In the days to come, it is expected that the administration may allow people of all age groups to visit the only and largest zoo in the region, he said.

Jain said strict parameters are being followed before allowing a visitor to enter the zoo.

When asked about the arrangements made by the management to ensure safety protocols, he said only those who are wearing masks and are carrying a sanitiser with them are being allowed after a thermal screening. Data of the same is also being maintained.

'During the 11-month period, the management did its best to save the animals. The zoo remained closed. The zoo premises was being sanitised regularly and limited staff was allowed to enter the zoo,' Jain said.

Located in Bhilai town of Chhattisgarh, Maitri Bagh Zoo is maintained by SAIL's Bhilai Steel Plant (BSP).

Spread over 167 acre, the park has the biggest musical fountain in the country, and a zoo with 28 species of animals, including white tiger, barking deer, leopard, and birds. It attracts over 5 lakh visitors every year. PTI ABI HRS hrs