Panther Safari in Jaipur’s Jhalana to get costlier
Tourists may have to fork out up to Rs 3000 from April 21.
Update: The state government has announced new rates for Jhalana Jungle safari. Click on the link below to know more:
Jaipur: Hundreds of tourists enjoy panther safari in Jhalana jungles near Jaipur daily, but come April 21 and the ticket price for entry may be too high to afford for many wildlife lovers. The Rajasthan government has privatized the Jhalana Jungle Safari, meaning that you won’t be able to take your own vehicle into the forests. You may be charged up to Rs 3,000 for hiring a gypsy.
Until now, the tourist department allowed visitors to take their own cars into the forest. The ticket price for cars was Rs 350. The entry fee for domestic tourist was Rs 100 per person, while it was Rs 800 for a foreign tourist.
But from April 21, people will have to hire gypsies. The cost may be anywhere between Rs 2,500 and Rs 3,000 per person. The entry fee may be charged separately.
“We had invited tenders. Seven contractors showed interest. We then issued work orders. The successful contractor was to start jungle safari from April 1, but the gypsies were not ready. So from April 21, tourists will have to use gypsies to be made available by the contractor to enter the forest area,” said a forest department officer.
The rates for gypsies are yet to be determined.
Jhalana forest has a rich wild life with nearly 20 panthers, 2513 blue bulls, 19 wolves, 46 chinkara, 35 hyenas, 25 wild cates, 22 black bucks, 91 foxes, 71 sehi and several other wild animals and birds.
The issue of privatizing the state’s ecotourism was raised in the state assembly budget session recently. Many legislators opposed it. Forest minister Gajendra Khinwsar told the assembly that when Public Private Partnership model could work in medicine and education fields, then why not it was being opposed for ecotourism.