WILDLIFE enthusiasts in the city have adopted but only 46 out of 792 animals in the Lucknow Zoo. Out of these, many are big corporate houses that have chosen to spend some part of their earning on speechless inmates of the zoo.
In all, as many as 12 corporate houses and some schools, have adopted the animals. Number of individuals who have come forward for the adoption of animals is 11. Zoo director Eva Sharma says, “The city has a population of over 40 lakhs but only 11 individuals have adopted our animals. To encourage adoption we offer many facilities. All residents adopting our animals get a rebate in income tax; besides, we display their names on boards and the benevolent ones are provided free pass to enter the Lucknow zoo. They are honoured by the zoo time to time.”
She adds, “I want more of schools, families, NGOs, government offices and departments, corporations and individuals to come forward for this cause. India is the only country where wildlife and environment are worshipped. Be it Durga’s lion, Lord Ganesh’s mouse, or Lord Vishnu’s ‘Sheshnag’. All Indian gods have an animal for vehicle. ”
Dental surgeon Dr Rajat Mathur, who adopted a white peacock, golden pigeon, white dove, stamp tale monkey and cappuccino monkey in the zoo, says, “I did it for my daughter Ria. People spend thousands of rupees on the their children’s birthday, but I spent money for animals and visited them on the my daughter’s birthday. These animals have become a part of my family.”
Vipul Singh of sector B Sitapur Road who has adopted a squirrel says, “I hail from a village and we are taught to respect wildlife and environment. Adopting the squirrel gives satisfaction, which I can’t describe in words. Animals need help from the elite class people who spend thousands of rupees on boozing and partying. I call on every able individual to spend some part of his earnings on these animals.” Shikha Tripathi adopted a white peacock in the memory of her late father SN Tripathi. “I cannot pay a better tribute to my father than this. He was fond of animals and I thought this as best way to remember him.”