ISLAMABAD - A move of the Ministry of Climate Change to take over the control of Marghazar Zoo failed due to a cold response extended by the Metropolitan Corporation Islamabad.

The Islamabad High Court (IHC) in the first week of July had directed the Ministry of Climate Change to take over the Marghzar Zoo to ensure proper care of the animals.

Chief Justice Athar Minallah in his order had directed Secretary Climate Change ministry to appoint an authorised officer to take over the management of the zoo till the next date of hearing on Aug 29. The court had directed that the officer appointed should ensure with assistance of Islamabad Wildlife Management Board that proper arrangements are made and the animals are treated on an urgent basis and kept protected from any sort of harm.

While following the court orders, the ministry decided to take control of Margahazar Zoo from MCI in a ceremony supposed to be held on Wednesday and an invitation in this regard remained in circulation among reporters of Climate Change ministry beat.  However, according to sources, when the officials of Climate Change and Wildlife Board arrived for the ceremony, they realised that the city managers were not ready to transfer control of the zoo.

An eyewitness told the Nation that the offices of the zoo director and deputy director were locked and no one was present there either. Mayor of Islamabad Shaikh Anser Aziz is on a foreign tour while the post of chief officer MCI is also vacant and there is nobody to respond officially on this uncertainty.  However, a senior officer of MCI on condition of anonymity said that the MCI had decided to not give the control of Islamabad Zoo to Climate Change Ministry and the civic body is preparing to challenge the decision of IHC in the Supreme Court.

Meanwhile, when contacted staff officer to Mayor Islamabad, Abdul Rasheed expressed his ignorance about any ceremony and commented that if the Climate Change ministry wanted to take over the zoo, they should approach the management of MCI through proper channel.  “We did not receive any formal letter or request from Climate Change ministry”, he said, adding: “We are working under Interior Ministry and Climate Change ministry should contact us thorough the same channel.”