‘Python’ missing from south Delhi park, rescuers search for two days
The snake that had taken refuge in Geetanjali Enclave’s central park is missing for two days and rescuers haven’t been able to locate it.
On Thursday, Hindustan Times reported that residents have stopped venturing out to the park as a python had taken refuge there for the past one month.
According to rescuers from the NGO Wildlife SOS, the snake, which wasn’t a python but a nonvenomous sand boa, has wandered away.
“Our teams went on both Thursday and Friday but no snake was found at the park. It might have wandered somewhere. The photo which the residents showed is that of a sand boa, which is not poisonous. It is not a python and because of the photo it is looking bigger than what it actually is,” a Wildlife SOS official said.
Residents, however, have decided to keep the park’s gate locked. “We have even deputed a guard outside the park to keep people away, especially children. We have spotted the python at least five to six times in the past few days. They (the rescuers) said they couldn’t find anything. However, If an incident takes place, who will be responsible for it,” said Giri Khanna, vice-president of Geetanjali Enclave co-operative society.
But why did this Sand Boa decide to take shelter in this neighbourhood park? Experts say growing habitat destruction and encroachment is rapidly blurring the lines between cities and forests. Consequently, the wildlife living in proximity to such expanding areas have no choice but to forage or seek shelter in urban habitats.
municipal corporations of Delhi have set a deadline of October 2 deadline to make the national capital open defecation-free.
In a recent meeting chaired by Delhi lieutenant governor Anil Baijal, the commissioners of the south and east civic bodies, said they would make their areas open defecation-free by October 2.
But the North corporation commissioner assured that it would be done by December 15.
A senior official of the south corporation said the civic body had started the process of installing 100 mobile toilet vans at slum clusters falling under its jurisdiction, in order to achieve the 100% open defecation-free (ODF) tag.
The civic agency has earmarked sites across 104 wards. An amount of ₹12 crore has been allocated for the project.
According to officials, the project aims to supplement the efforts of the Delhi Urban Shelter Improvement Board (DUSIB) and Railways —the agencies responsible for providing infrastructure facilities in slums.
“The densely populated areas in Okhla, Nizamuddin and Tughlakabad face space constraints in constructing community toilets as they are near railway lines. So the south civic body has decided to place mobile toilet vans here,” said a senior official from SDMC.
According to parameters of the Swachh Bharat Mission, any urban local body can declare its wards ODF only if it is successful in providing public conveniences at 75% of its areas. Also, there should be provision for toilets within 500 metres of slum settlements.
Baijal has directed all municipal commissioners and the Delhi Development Authority to explore the possibility to create more multi-level stack parking and surface parking in their areas for the smooth implementation of the upcoming ‘Parking Policy.’
The North Delhi Municipal Corporation had announced construction of 10 stack parking lots near metro stations, especially on the Green Line — that connects Mundka and Inderlok stations.
The South Corporation has decided to construct these parkings near busy markets, metro stations as well as residential areas so that these facilities can be used by visitors and residents.