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New cottages to boost Dalma footfall

- Swank accommodation, kitchen to debut at Makulakocha by this year-end

Cosy cottages, manicured gardens, à la carte food options — just what a beleaguered state needs to boost its morale at a time it is facing flak from Jharkhand High Court for failing to offer travel-friendly facilities at tourist hot spots.

According to authorities at the state’s lone elephant sanctuary, four hut-shaped cottages are set to debut at Dalma foothills in Makulakocha by the end of this year. A well-furnished kitchen will also start dishing out delicacies as demanded by the visitors.

The Rs 52-lakh project, being executed by the state forest department, has been sponsored by Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority (CAMPA) under the Union ministry of environment and forests.

One bamboo house and a four-room dormitory styled guesthouse already exist at the site. This apart, there is a three-room guesthouse in Pinderabera on upper Dalma.

Ranchi divisional forest officer Kamlesh Pandey said: “We are building four cottages on around an acre in Makulakocha. They are almost complete. Finishing touches are being laid now. These will open doors by the end of this year along with a well-stocked kitchen.”

Describing the cottages as simple, yet classy, Pandey said that each one of them is a separate set-up with two double beds, a small cupboard and study table among other furniture.

“There are separate toilets too. A small veranda adjoins each of the huts, where one can relax over a cup of coffee, read books or simply bask in the glory of nature,” he said.

The divisional forest officer admitted that none of the existing facilities is as grand and beautiful as the upcoming ones.

“The whole area has been cordoned off with a boundary wall. A vast garden has been created with proper pavements. It will be dotted with coconut and other fruit-bearing trees, creating natural shades,” Pandey said, adding that a deer park opposite the new facility would be another attraction.

Dalma range officer Mangal Kashyap maintained that they were planning to lend tribal and ethnic touch to the cottages.

“We are planning to paint the walls with tribal folklore and art that will be unique. But a decision is yet to be taken,” he said.

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