Rs 40 crore sought to save lake palace Neermahal

From Our Correspondent

 AGARTALA: Three after Chief Minister Manik Sarkar laid emphasis on retrofitting of the lake palace- Neermahal, the Tourism department has sent a proposal for overall development of the 81-year old historic structure in West Tripura district.

At a high level meeting on tourism, the Chief Minister made some specific proposals to bring the past glory of country’s second lake palace back.

Increase of water level, ring road covering the entire lake palace, retrofitting of the palace and preservation of biodiversity were among focus points of the Chief Minister.

According to official sources, a detailed project amounting to Rs. 40 crore includes various plans like renovation of the palace, overall development of catchments area of the lake, preservation of of bio-diversity, drudging of the lake and rehabilitation of fish farmers.

While an amount of Rs. 15.17 crore has been claimed for preservation of bio-diversity and proper care of Noyacherra, the source of the lake, Rs. 50 lakh has been sought for renovation of the 81-year old structure.

Rs. 22.23 crore has been earmarked for increasing water level in the lake by undertaking drudging.

The quantity of submerged area has been reduced from 2066 hectares in 1947 to 374 hectares in 2010.

The state government has been demanding for financial help to save the lake palace which was built as a summer resort by the erstwhile king of Tripura, Maharaja Birbikram Kishore Manikya Bahadur, in 1930.

“During the last visit of DoNER Secretary, the state government had taken up the problems with the heritage palace lake and sought opinion to save it. In turn, the Secretary had requested the government to prepare a proposal and place it before the Ministry”, said an official of Tripura Tourism Development Corporation (TTDC) here on Monday.

Earlier also, the state government had sought help from Ministry of Forest and Environment, Ministry of Fisheries and Brahamaputa Board but efforts have yielded no result yet.

It is interesting to note that the Centre had offered Rs. 494.75 crore for overall development of Manipur’s Loktak lake.

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