Gujarat govt failed to develop dinosaur fossils site: CAG

Geological Survey of India found the 6.5 crore-years-old fossils site at Raiyoli village in Kheda district in 1981-82.

PTI| Updated: Mar 31, 2016, 22:22 PM IST

Ahmedabad: The state government has failed develop the proposed dinosaur park at the world's largest dinosaur egg hatchery site in Gujarat, 33 years after the fossils were discovered, a CAG report said.

This was despite investment of Rs 8.58 crore by the Tourism Corporation of Gujarat Ltd (TGCL), said report of the Comptroller and Auditor General, tabled in the Assembly Thursday.

Geological Survey of India found the 6.5 crore-years-old fossils site at Raiyoli village in Kheda district in 1981-82.

Around 100 eggs of dinosaurs, bones and other fossilised remains were found during the excavation. It is known to be the largest egg hatchery site in the world with home to seven species of dinosaurs.

The state government had asked the forest and environment department and TGCL to preserve the site and develop 'Balasinor Dinosaur Fossil Park' for tourism. But 33 years later, little had been done either to preserve the rich fossils or develop it as a tourism attraction, CAG noted.

"Fossils at the site may provide vital information to scientists... (they) need to be excavated scientifically and studied....However, there was no research on fossils. Further, some samples were sent to Jaipur laboratory for analysis but report was not available on record (till June 2014)," it said.

"Eggs hatcheries site remains unfenced. The Forest and Environment Department was not having inventory for various fossils lying at the site and no photo documentation of fossils was prepared since the discovery," the report said.

No guidelines were framed for protection of fossils, and no steps were taken to have it declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, which would have given a boost to tourism and the local economy, CAG said.

With no development and preservation, only 2,284 people visited the site between 2009-14, it noted.