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CM Pushkar Singh Dhami will inaugurate 'Surai Ecotourism Zone' and 'Kakra Crocodile Trail' in Khatima on Wednesday.
CM Pushkar Singh Dhami will inaugurate 'Surai Ecotourism Zone' and 'Kakra Crocodile Trail' in Khatima on Wednesday.

Uttarakhand CM to inaugurate 'Surai Ecotourism Zone', 'Kakra Crocodile Trail' in Khatima

ANI | Updated: Dec 28, 2021 19:40 IST

Udham Singh Nagar (Uttarakhand) [India], December 28 (ANI): Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami will inaugurate 'Surai Ecotourism Zone' and 'Kakra Crocodile Trail' at Khatima on Wednesday.
The 'Surai Ecotourism Zone' will be the first such eco-tourism zone in the state where tourists will be able to enjoy jungle safari. Till now, the jungle safari is only being practised in the national parks and biosphere reserves in the state, as per a press statement from the Uttarakhand government.
Also, the 'Kakra Crocodile Trail; the first crocodile trail of the country where tourists will be able to witness the crocodile specie 'Marsh' from close, safely.
Both these schemes are in line with the Chief Minister's 'Young Ecopreneur Scheme' under which self-employment opportunities are being created by connecting the economy of the local people of Uttarakhand with forests and wildlife. Under this scheme, the target is to make 1 lakh youth 'ecopreneurs'.
Sandeep Kumar, DFO of Terai Eastern Forest Division said that an innovative scheme is being implemented for how to connect the people of Khatima, surrounded by forest area with environmental protection and self-employment.
The main objective of this scheme is to help Khatima and surrounding areas, which have been backward from the point of view of tourism, gain a high place in tourism.
The Chief Minister's vision is to convert the Surai forest area into an eco-tourism zone by systematically developing the 'Tarai Eastern Forest Division', which has biodiversity and wildlife so that its natural beauty can be used to provide direct and indirect employment to the local people. In this connection, in the past, he had announced to develop Surai and the surrounding forest area of 'Tarai Eastern Forest Division' from the point of view of tourism.
The plan is being implemented by dividing it into four parts. These include setting up of Surai Ecotourism Zone, Kakra Crocodile Trail, Khatima City Forest and Chuka Migratory Bird Centre. The DFO informed that the construction and development work of the Surai Ecotourism Zone and Kakra Crocodile Trail scheme has been completed. While the process of development of Khatima City Forest and Chuka Migratory Bird Center has been started.
As per the release, Surai Ecotourism Zone will have two benefits, firstly, this area is rich in biodiversity and it will be protected by ensuring public participation and secondly, by developing its forest routes for jungle safaris, employment opportunities will also be created here.
The Forest Department has developed the forest routes of Surai forest area as Biodiversity Trail. This area is spread over an area of 180 square kilometres. It is bordered by Sharda Sagar Dam in the east, Khatima Nagar in the west, Melaghat Road in the north and Pilibhit Tiger Reserve area in the south.
Interestingly, this naturally beautiful forest area is rich in sal trees, pastures and water. Due to all these reasons, the movement of tigers continues here. Apart from this, about 125 species of mammals, more than 150 species of birds and about 20 species of reptiles are also found in this forest area. By developing the forest routes here, a trail of about 40 km has been prepared for jungle safari, in which tourists sitting in gypsy can witness rare wild animals (Royal Bengal Tiger, Bear, Chital, Sambhar, Kakad, Pangolin, Coral Snake, Panda etc.) along with picturesque forests, meadows, ancient Sharda Canal and beautiful ponds.
Also, Kakra Nala is situated on the western boundary of Surai Ecotourism Zone. This creek is the natural habitat of the Crocodile (Marsh Crocodile). This species of crocodile found in freshwater sources has become extinct in many countries like Bhutan and Myanmar. This egg-laying species is considered extremely dangerous. At present, there are more than 100 marsh crocodiles in this creek. For the tourists to easily see these crocodiles, 4 km long channel fencing has been developed as 'Kakra Crocodile Trail'. This is the first Crocodile Trail in the state. Three viewpoints and several watchtowers have been built in the trail so that crocodiles can be seen up close in a safe way. (ANI)