Post leopard sighting, park to be ‘fenced’ off

After a leopard was spotted last month, a 12-feet high fence is to come up along four kilometres of the capital’s Yamuna Biodiversity Park. The fence will safeguard residents of Jagatpur Village that shares its boundary with the park by preventing wild animals from straying in there.

The park authorities have sent a plan of the area for chain-link fencing to be installed by the Delhi Development Authority’s (DDA) engineering department. The park has been developed on DDA land.

“The technical department of the DDA including senior officers would be visiting the area on Sunday for a site visit. The fence has to be put up as soon as possible since the park is expected to have wild animals coming into it including both herbivores and carnivores due to its thriving eco-system. We need to ensure the villagers security first,” said, a senior official at the park.

The leopard, who had made the park its home for some time during November-end, was translocated to a sanctuary in Saharanpur later. However, wildlife experts too had objected to the shifting out of the animal, as high carnivores are seen as crucial to the eco-system of a forest area. This has led to the creation of a fence. Located in north Delhi’s Wazirabad area close to the Yamuna river bed, the Park spread across 457 acres is close to human habitation with a population of over 5,500 residents in the adjoining village and parts of other settlements such as Baba Colony.

However, segments of the river corridor will be kept open to facilitate the movement of animals. The Park is divided into phase I and II, the leopard had come in from the wetland region in phase II, supposedly from Kalesar National Park in Haryana. “We need to connect the two phases as well as the river corridor in order to have a rich wildlife in the Park” said Prof CR Babu, head of Centre for Environmental Management of Degraded Ecosystems.

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