The Science and Energy park of Durgapur, which has been lying closed for the last four years caught fire yesterday and was partially damaged. It was probably the dry leaves of the park which somehow caught fire at first and soon the fire spread over a large portion of the park. Three fire fighting engine got control over the raging fire after an hour of continuous effort.
West Bengal Renewable Energy Development Agency (WBREDA) constructed this park at the behest of Mrinal Banerjee, the contemporary Power Minister in the Left Front Ministry. Mr. Banerjee who was the MLA from Durgapur took the initiative to construct one such park to educate students and general public about the use and formation of energy. For the construction of the park, the central government provided 1 crore rupees and the state government gave 40 lakhs. Asansol Durgapur Development Authority gave the much needed land for the project at a place adjacent to the famous “Bhabani Pathaker Tila” which is midway between City Centre and DVC more of Durgapur.
The work for the park was started on 26thFebruary 2006 and got completed on September 2007. The various models kept in the park not only educated students and enthusiasts about how electricity is being formed by utilizing the energy of the sun, speed of running water but also gave them a fast-hand experience to make hydro electricity and solar electricity. Within a very short span of time, the Science and Energy Park became one of the best and popular place of visit in Durgapur.
After the park was started, WBREDA engaged a private agency to look after the day-to-day running and looking after of the park. But lack of continual upliftment and in the absence of newer models, the park lost its early days glory. The private agency also detached itself from the project. Though an initiative was taken to give Durgapur Municipality Corporation to look after the park and keep it running, but the effort was not successful. The park lost its former enthusiasm and WBREDA had no option but to close the park in 2009.
Many models in the park got partially damaged by yesterday’s fire. May be after this the governing authority of Durgapur will took initiative to re-open the park and keep it running. All the citizens of Durgapur need to raise their voice to concerned authority to re-open the park.