Calcutta: Former India captain Anil ‘Jumbo’ Kumble, who has “adopted” a cobra and is “supporting” a lion and a giraffe, across two zoos in his home state, Karnataka, has welcomed the Alipore Zoo’s adoption scheme.
The initiative met with an overwhelming response earlier this month.
“I do support it... They should have got Dada (Sourav Ganguly) to campaign for them,” Kumble, who is the president of the Karnataka State Cricket Association, told The Telegraph on Monday.
While the adopted cobra is in the Bangalore Zoo, the lion and giraffe are in Mysore.
Besides cricket, Kumble (42) is passionate about photography, wildlife and the conservation of forests.
Not necessarily in that order, though.
It’s Kumble’s belief that, as with some of the other things, a lack of “awareness” among the people is the biggest challenge facing those committed to protecting wildlife and saving the forests.
He’s not against urbanisation, but what about the protected areas (national parks, sanctuaries)? Quite simply, they need to get bigger.
Till recently, Kumble had been the co-vice-chairman of his state’s Wildlife Board and took initiatives which were very well received, like rewarding the deserving among the otherwise unsung forest guards.
He’d involved the Foundation which bears his name, too.
Appointed in November 2009 by the-then chief minister, BJP’s B.S. Yeddyuruppa, Kumble enjoyed the rank of a minister of state and was entitled to use the much-envied red beacon.
In May this year, the Congress regained power in Karnataka, but the Siddaramaiah government hasn’t yet made appointments to the Wildlife Board.
Unless it becomes a political issue, Kumble should be back as its co-vice-chairman.
Traditionally, the chief minister is the Wildlife Board’s chairman, with one of his colleagues being the vice-chairman.
The arrangement had been tweaked to get Kumble on board.