Halted around three months, boating will make a comeback at the Sukhna Lake by the end of next week, as the caution period after the bird flu scare comes to an end on March 19.
The administration on Tuesday wrote to the central government and also the Regional Disease Diagnostic Laboratory, Jalandhar, for a final nod. The lake had remained completely closed for visitors for a month from December 19 after a goose tested positive for bird flu. When it was reopened, the water was kept off limits. Now, at the end of the three months, the bird flu POSP - Post-Operation Surveillance Plan - concludes on March 19. It could be opened on that day or anytime in that week, said officials.
"We have written to the authorities concerned, and expect the final approval very soon. We are eager to restart boating as it is a prime attraction at the lake," said UT health secretary Anurag Aggarwal.
But the geese won't return, as the administration wants to take no chances. Over 100 birds at the lake were culled in December after the presence of the H5N1 virus (bird flu) was confirmed in one of the dead geese.
With decks all but cleared for the reopening, not only would the visitors be happy but rowers and practitioners of other related sports would also get their practice back on track.