Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray’s speech at the inauguration of the Balasaheb Thackeray Gorewada International Zoological Park in Nagpur:
Let me start by greeting you on the occasion of Republic Day.
As days go, we are realizing the importance of the environment. However, while we conserve our jungles, there are some ideas of development that often infringes on our ecology.
This inauguration of the Balasaheb Thackeray Gorewada International Zoological Park is my third visit to Vidarbha in the past few days.
I was here to survey the Gosi Khurd irrigation project, take stock of the unfortunate Bhandara District Hospital fire. A month before that, I was here to survey the Samruddhi expressway.
First, I want to dispel the misunderstanding that Vidarbha has been kept away from developmental works. I wish to wash these notions away with the waters of the massive Gosi Khurd dam.
We want to ensure that the Nagpur to Shirdi stretch of the Samruddhi expressway, is opened up for traffic from May 1.
I am promising my adivasi brothers & sisters that once this zoological park is completed, a Gondwana theme park or Gondwana gaon will be created here. It will showcase the rich history, culture, tradition and way of life.
Tourism is a major industry now. In tourist destinations abroad like the Masai Mara reserve, the culture of the local Masai people is projected. Similarly, the lives and culture of the Gonds and Gondwana will be shown here to visitors from across the globe.
In normal zoos, animals are kept confined in cages. However, this zoological park will be different due to the presence of the free-ranging animals, and also have a night safari like one in Singapore.
My grandmother, that is Balasaheb’s mother, was from Paratwada in Amravati, so Vidarbha’s blood runs in our veins. Hence, no one should try to teach us about love for Vidarbha. We are related to Vidarbha by blood.
Our Maha Vikas Aghadi Govt is committed to ensure that Maharashtra moves forward on the path of development.
Jai Hind, Jai Maharashtra!