Jaipur, July 2 : Tourism department in Jaipur is building a natural park-like shelter with extensive plantation and well-equipped veterinary hospital, for the elephants that ferry tourists in the pink city.
"Hathi Gaon" or the Elephant Village, which is slated to be completed next month, will cost the exchequer Rs. 50 million.
During the first phase of this project, there will be a provision for 51 elephants to stay.
This village would have all the amenities must for an elephant. There will be a huge pond especially created for the elephants where they can enjoy cool shower even during summer months.
"All the elephants who will be staying here will be provided with amenities for a healthy stay. The cleanliness will be maintained here all round the year. Their irritation will also go when they stay together. There will be increased tourist inflow, who will come to see so many elephants staying together," said Narendra Jain, a contractor of elephant village.
There would be huge 14 metre long gallery for each elephant. Since an elephant is considered as very affectionate animal to human beings additional rooms for their 'Mahawats' are also being constructed in the same premises. In addition, a room will come up to stock elephant's feed.
A.K. Sharma, executive engineer, elephant village project, spoke in detail about this project.
"Hathi Gaon (Elephant Village) is a project where all the elephants who used to stay at different places will be brought together under one roof. Earlier, their owners used to upkeep them but they were not able to get the kind of environment which the elephants loved. So the government thought of making a 'Hathi Gaon' where the elephants will stay together. We have kept provision for 51 elephants here," said A.K. Sharma.
Elephant owners and Mahawat are very happy with this development as they feel that their jumbo pet can now enjoy natural ambience.
In the second phase of this project, 60 more dwellings will be erected for the jumbos. This project is slated for completion by the end of 2008.