The low boundary of Tata zoo. Picture by Animesh Sengupta
The forest department has directed Tata Steel Zoological Park (TSZP) authorities to improve security-related logistics at the Jamshedpur zoo.
In a letter addressed to the zoo director, divisional forest officer of Dhalbhum Karma Bhutia asked for foolproof security to be ensured in the zoo for the safety of the animals.
Among Bhutia’s recommendations was increasing the height of the boundary wall of the zoo that ran along Marine Drive.
Bhutia, who is also the district wildlife warden, set a deadline of August 15 for increasing the height of the boundary wall, which is as low as three feet in some places.
Zoo director Bipul Chakraborty admitted having received the forest department’s letter on plugging security loopholes.
“We have got the letter today, and will be complying with the district wildlife warden’s instructions accordingly,” said Chakraborty.
Speaking to The Telegraph, the zoo director said they have already replaced security guards after the July 10 incident when a man entered the tiger enclosure, only to be attacked by the animal.
“We have not only replaced the security guards and increased the number of security personnel, we have already put in place a locking system in cages and enclosures according to the directives of the Central Zoo Authority,” said Chakraborty.
On the issue of raising the height of the boundary wall, the official said they would raise the boundary wall’s height further, making it two metres from the ground, and this would be done before the August 15 deadline.
“We are looking forward to the joint inspection of the zoo with the district wildlife warden and by August 15 the height of the boundary wall of the zoo — which is the main problem — would be increased,” said Chakraborty.
Following the incident of trespassing on July 10, the district wildlife warden had inspected the zoo and said the low height of the boundary wall could have helped the intruder enter the premises.
Meanwhile, the TSZP director said that the three member team that had been constituted to probe the circumstances that led to a 28-year-old entering the tiger’s enclosure was yet to complete its investigations.