A clinic for elephants of the northeast was inaugurated at the upcoming Mark Shand Memorial Learning Centre by Sir Evelyn de Rothschild, Founding Patron of the UK based charity Elephant Family and its CEO Ruth Powys in the presence of distinguished guests and a colourful audience from the neighbouring villages. The facility, named after legendary conservationist Mark Shand, is a part of the Kaziranga Discovery Park, coming up opposite the IFAW-WTI and Assam Forest Department run Centre of Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation near Kaziranga National Park today.
Inaugurating the facility, Sir Evelyn de Rothschild congratulated the team and all the people who built the facility. “Mark was an energetic and dynamic personality who believed in lending a helping hand to animals. Today is a great day for me to inaugurate this facility for elephants.”
The Mark Shand Memorial Asian Elephant Learning Centre in the Kaziranga Discovery Park is supported by Elephant Family, a leading conservation organization of the world dedicated to the conservation and welfare of elephants in Asia. Mark Shand had spent some valuable time with the captive elephants in Kaziranga and several mahouts here honour him at the end of the tourist season each year.
Prior to the unveiling of the relief of Mark Shand, Shri M. K. Yadava, Director, Kaziranga National Park welcomed all the dignitaries from India and abroad and guests from the villages to this colourful event that started with a traditional welcome.
Summing up the event and the work ahead, Vivek Menon, Executive Director and CEO of Wildlife Trust of India said, “We are already working for the animals of Kaziranga at CWRC. But if Kaziranga has to be saved, it is you the people who play the most important role. So, it is for you that we are developing this learning hub of Kaziranga Discovery Park where your children will play and learn and appreciate the bio-diversity and nature that Kaziranga houses.”
Mark Shand Asian Elephant Learning Centre is established as one of the three wings coming up under Kaziranga Discovery Park whose foundation stone was laid on 28th December 2014.The other two wings are Kaziranga World Heritage Learning Centre and IFAW-WTI Wildlife Rescue Learning Centre which will be dedicated to the public in coming years.