Mumbai: Visitors unhappy with renovated aquarium, hike in ticket prices

Mar 25, 2015, 14:00 IST | Delaveen Cherag Tarapore

While the number of visitors at the Taraporewala aquarium is increasing every day, most leave disappointed saying there is nothing special to see that justifies the hike in ticket price

Three weeks after the country’s oldest aquarium, Taraporewala, was reopened, it has witnessed a large crowd eager to see the newly renovated place. However, most of the visitors at the aquarium say that the trip has been disappointing.

Visitors claimed that they had to wait for at least half an hour before they could go inside the aquarium, after purchasing the ticket
Visitors claimed that they had to wait for at least half an hour before they could go inside the aquarium, after purchasing the ticket

Every day the aquarium, which was opened to public on March 3, has a huge expectant crowd queuing at the ticket counter. In the mornings the place is full of school children that have been brought to the Charni Road aquarium as a part of their extra-curricular activities.

However, officials have been unable to efficiently manage the crowd, leading to chaos at the ticket counter, which opens at 10 am, and inside the aquarium. Visitors claim that they have to wait for at least half an hour before they get to go inside.

The situation inside the aquarium is no different, as the lines move slowly, despite creating paths for the crowd to move. With 16 fish tanks, visitors move at a snail’s pace, with nobody managing the crowd. The counter has to be closed a few times to first accommodate existing ticket holders.

“From the time the aquarium was reopened, the crowd has only increased every day. The situation is even worse on weekends,” said a watchman of the aquarium. However, this is not the only disappointment that the public is facing.

The excitement about the aquarium tunnel, which was a prominent feature drawing visitors, seems to have been misunderstood by many. People say that they had assumed the entire area was converted to the aquarium tunnel, whereas it is only at the entrance.

Visitors also complained that at the moment, the aquarium has really small species of fishes and reptiles, which does not justify the entry rates charged for the visit. The aquarium is expected to witness a larger crowd during the summer vacation months of April and May.

Official speak
Rajendra Jadhav, Joint Commissioner of Fisheries, said, “The aquarium has the capacity to accommodate 250 visitors at a time. However, the crowd has only been increasing from the time the aquarium was reopened. In the mornings, school children flock in huge numbers. At the moment we are trying to keep the fish in the best condition possible.”


Sunil Kumar, Ludhiana resident
I had heard a lot about the aquarium from friends and in the news, and I came all the way from Ludhiana with my children to see the place. However, I’m terribly disappointed. There was nothing new to see, nothing special. Even the fish in the tanks were tiny.

Pradeep Singh, Goregaon resident
There have been no major changes in the aquarium from the inside; just a few changes here and there. The only interesting part is the entrance (aquarium tunnel). Everything else is the same. I don’t understand why they have increased the prices so much.

Meghna Bandelwar, Dadar resident
I was so excited to see the aquarium tunnel, but when I visited I realised it was only at the entrance. The increase in rate and the high cost of photography made me think that the aquarium would be exceptionally good. However, it was just renovated, nothing more than that.

Pankaj Jagat, Goregaon resident
There has to be something done about the crowd which has to wait for at least half an hour before it gets to go inside. They need to make a few rules to make sure that visitors keep moving. Also, authorities should have some covered space at the entrance for people who are standing outside.

Approx visitors on weekdays

Approx visitors on weekends

Rs 60
Ticket price for an adult (above 12 years)

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