Ministry closes Chitwan resorts

CHITWAN: The seven resorts in Chitwan National Park (CNP) have worn a deserted look since this afternoon, after tourists were shifted to hotels outside the park.

Wednesday, the CNP had sent a letter directing the resorts to close their operations following a direction from the Forest Ministry. The tenure of the resorts ended after 16 years on Wednesday.

Dr Narendramanbabu Pradhan, Chief conservation officer, CNP, informed that the resorts had been asked to discontinue their operations till they get next direction from the Ministry.

However, the resort employees have been allowed to take care of the elephants and hotel infrastructures. Asked if the employees would be relieved of their services, conservation officer Pradhan said that the ministry would make the decision. The resorts are located between Sunachuri in east and Nawalparasi in west. The resorts inside the CNP are: Machan, Gaiada Wildlife Camp, Chitwan Jungle Lodge, Narayani Safari, Island Jungle Resort, Tiger Tops and Temple Tiger.

According to CNP Office, Kasara, over 20 million revenue had been collected from the resorts in the last fiscal. However, some of the resorts had been defaulting payment of conservation fees for the last few years. More than 600 people are employed in the resorts.