Updated on: Friday, November 12, 2021, 11:26 PM IST

Mumbai: Byculla zoo records footfall of over 50k visitors with Rs 21.18 lakh revenue collected in just 8 days since Nov 1

The usual number of visitors on weekdays in pre-Covid times was 5,000-6,000 persons.

The Veermata Jijabai Bhosale Udyan and Zoo, popularly known as Byculla Zoo or Rani Baug received a massive response during the first 10 days since it reopened in November 1 after being shut for eight months.

In the first eight days since it reopened, the zoo recorded a footfall of over 50k visitors and the total revenue collected was Rs 21.18 lakh.

On Sunday alone, 13,092 visitors thronged to the zoo and earning the zoo a revenue of over Rs 5 lakh in just one day. The remaining seven days, the zoo has been recording an average footfall of 4,000 to 5,000 enthusiasts, informed Dr. Sanjay Tripathi, director of Byculla Zoo.

The usual number of visitors on weekdays in pre-Covid times was 5,000-6,000 persons.

"The number of visitors we have received between November 1 to November 10 is comparable to pre-Covid times when on weekends crowds went up to 15,000. The total revenue figure is just for eight days as there were two Wednesdays when the zoo remains shut."

The zoo drew over 1,621 visitors and garnered revenue of Rs 68,725 on day one (November 1).

According to zoo authorities, the two biggest attractions for visitors were the two Royal Bengal tigers named Shakti and Karishma, followed by the Humboldt penguins.

After remaining shut for 11 months, the zoo reopened on February 15, 2021, but had to shut down again in April because of the second wave of Covid.

The November 1 reopening has come after a gap of nearly seven months. The zoo has lost a significant amount of revenue during the pandemic. Between March and June 2019, it had collected nearly Rs 1.87 crore through the sale of tickets. Before the lockdown, during peak season, its revenue collection touched Rs 4.5 - Rs 5 lakh per month. However, revenue collected up to March 15, 2020, was just Rs 1.92 lakh.

Tripathi said, "We handled 1,621 people on Monday, this is excluding children below three years of age and senior citizens." He added that during pre-Covid times, the daily average visitor count was 5,000 to 6000, which went down to 3,000 during weekdays between the first and second wave. "We were expecting an increase in footfall during weekends this time and we were prepared," he said.

The Byculla Zoo also gets many visitors because of the visits by morning and evening walkers. However, currently because of Covid-19, only a morning walk is allowed in the zoo between 6 am to 8.30 am followed by the operational timings of the zoo which is 9.30 am to 6 pm.

The entry fee for the zoo is Rs 50, however, the BMC last week appealed to children and senior citizens to avoid visiting the zoo owing to Covid-19.

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Published on: Friday, November 12, 2021, 11:26 PM IST