Through these new park rules I think I wont be able to see many of my friends visiting this place again. They enjoyed visiting Bandhavgarh and helped a lot in getting it right kind of publicity in Europe. Iain Green wrote two books on Bandhavgarh but could not afford to visit since last 5 years. Ken Hawkins is the other friend who will think twice before coming here about the expenses. There are quite a few names like them to add in this list.
M.P.Govt decided to increase the park entry fee for Indians from 16th October 2010. Because none of the Tour operator or the travel agent or big lodge owners were going to affected by this so no one raise the voice against it and small lodge owners - jeep owners who are really going to affected doesnt have any plateform to raise their voice.
Yesterday I heard another rumour that Tala zone of Bandhavgarh is going to be declared as Premium Zone means Entry fee to this zone will be just double.
So Indians entry fee increased from Rs 500/ per trip to Rs 1000/ per trip in October 2010 and then again from Dec 2010 they have to pay Rs 2000/ per trip for Tala zone.
I remember one Chief Wildlife Warden of Madhya Pradesh saying that we need more and more teachers and families with kids to visit National Parks. This will help in spreading the conservation message to the future generation. Can they afford to visit National Parks now??
Lots of discussion is going on o diferent plateforms but will they raise the voice on this issue?
Once the vehicles allowed in a National Park are according to the carrying capacity of a park then what is the need of declaring it as a premium zone??
Where is the Experience of wildlife viewing in the park??
In order to please their guest with camera a driver can create havoc in the park.
This is what gave Bandhavgarh a very bad publicity.
Can situation improve??
When a person spends this kind of money he wants some return. That creates the problem.
Thats the reason we dont accept day visitors at our place. Most of our clients stays with us minimum for five nights. Many of our photographer clients pack their camera gears by 8AM in winter and 0730 in the summer.
One photographer use to come with 5 film rolls on a 3 week stay with us. Once he had 40 sightings from jeep and more than half of the films were used on Baby Elephant.
That breed of Photographers is dyieng out fast.
How many Indian photographer can behave like Mr Nanak Dhingra??
Who comes just for a particular shot and for that one shot he will wait for weeks.
No pressure on anyone, neither on Driver and nor on Guide.
Let me come on Main subject.
So when vehicle nos are reduced according to the carrying capacity of the park than what is the need to declare it as a premium Zone??
Do they change their statics all the time??
Carrying capacity formula was created by NTCA and applied in all Indian National Parks.
This formula was created to control the vehicle numbers.
Later on NTCA, infact MOEF, asked all the State Govt. to regulate the tourism in Tiger Reserves.
In the name of regulisation this Premium Zone idea has come up. Off the record this is to generate the revenue??
Here comes another question.
Things of National importance such as National Parks, Archeological Monuments, Museums etc are run by Govt on tax payers money.
Each and every citizen have similar rights on them. In archeological monuments and Museums we pay a token money to enter. But in National Parks in M.P. we as partner / owner of the National Park as Tax Payers has to pay the cost to share the upkeep of the parks.
Is it justified?
Will it save the Tigers in long run?
Readers comments will help me in understanding the situation.