Jan 28, 2019

Crocodiles relocated for seaplane service to Unity statue

Indian officials have begun relocating some 300 crocodiles from a reservoir next to the world's tallest statue to allow a seaplane service for visitors.

The animals, some around 3m (9ft 9in) long, are being lured into metal cages and and transported on the back of pick-up trucks to elsewhere in the western state of Gujarat.

But conservationists have criticised the plan.

The 182m statue of independence hero Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel was inaugurated last October.

The bronze-clad statue sculpture - named 'State of Unity', is located some 200km (125 miles) from the state's main city of Ahmedabad, has become a popular attraction.

At the moment, there are no train services and most tourists reach the site by bus.

Local forestry official Anuradha Sahu said the instruction had come from the state government "for safety reasons as the tourist influx has increased", AFP news agency reports.

(Excerpts : BBC News)