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Jungle Lodges & Resorts told to return Hemmadaga Nature Camp to Forest Dept

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By uday

The Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF) – Wildlife, with the approval of the Principal Chief Conservator of Forests, has recently issued a directive instructing the Chief Conservator of Forests (CCF) for the Belagavi Circle to initiate proceedings for the transfer of operation and maintenance responsibilities of Hemmadaga Nature Camp in Bhimgad Sanctuary from Jungle Lodges and Resorts (JLR) back to the Forest Department in Khanapur, Belagavi district.

This decision follows a proposal by wildlife activist Giridhar Kulkarni to Brijesh Kumar Dixit, PCCF (HoFF), and Subhash Malkhede, PCCF (Wildlife) of the Karnataka Forest Department. Kulkarni urged for the transfer citing various reasons, including a decline in revenue and reduced local access to the camp after it was handed over to JLR. The company had reported losses during its tenure operating the camp.

bhimgad

In support of Kulkarni’s proposal, Vithal Halgekar, MLA for Khanapur, also appealed to Eshwar Khandre, Minister for Forests, to transfer the Nature Camp’s management to the Forest Department.

Due to delays in decision-making within the Forest Department, Khandre, during his visit to Belagavi Zoo in December 2023, verbally instructed Manjunath Chavan, CCF for the Belagavi Circle, to promptly submit recommendations for the transfer.

Now, the PCCF (Wildlife) has officially issued an order on March 11, 2024, directing the CCF for the Belagavi Circle to take necessary steps to transfer the nature camp’s management from JLR back to the Forest Department.

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