After much debate, Marine Drive’s iconic Taraporevala Aquarium will be thrown open to the public in August or in the second week of September. The Rs 20-crore project is in its final stages of completion. The entry fee for the facility will be hiked to Rs 20, Rs 30 and Rs 50 from Rs 5, Rs 10 and Rs 15 respectively, when the aquarium is inaugurated in its new avatar.
The renovated Taraporevala Aquarium will also have a fish spa, which will house Garra Rufa fish — known to eat dead skin off feet. Other brand new features available at the aquarium are — a touch pool that would allow visitors to touch starfish, sea urchins and turtles and look at sea animals up close. Officials said that there would be 16 tanks for marine life, nine for fresh water fish and 32 tanks for tropical fish.
We hope that the new aquarium is better maintained than its predecessor. Taraporevala Aquarium was in dire need of a revamp. Like the city’s Byculla zoo, a relook and a general upgradation was necessary to bring it in line with other world-class aquariums across the globe.
There is huge interest in marine life. A couple of exhibitions that were held at city colleges saw long queues of eager people who wanted to see exotic marine life. The aquarium is Mumbai’s iconic building, at a stunning location and deserves to be better looked after with high standards of maintenance. And the onus of this mission lies on us too. We must display better civic sense while visiting such educational centres. Obedient queues and better organisation will ensure a more pleasurable viewing experience for the visitor and speak of respect towards the city and its tourist spots.