India is moving 500 endangered crocodiles to launch a seaplane service near the Statue of Unity: Report

  • The Gujarat Forest Department is reportedly relocating as many as 500 crocodiles from two ponds located near a dam on the Narmada river.
  • Until Tuesday, the forest authorities were able to evacuate nearly 15 crocodiles.
  • The Forest Authorities and Gujarat government are trying to bring a seaplane service so tourists can visit the ‘Statue of Unity,’ the world’s tallest statue.
In a bid to boost tourism around the Statue of Unity, the Gujarat Forest Department is in action to evacuate as many as 500 crocodiles from two ponds located near a dam on the Narmada river, Indian Express reported.

The forest authorities have been able to evacuate nearly 15 crocodiles but are unsure where to release them, according to the report.

The crocodiles in the ponds are being trapped in cages for moving them to another location. The two ponds are said to contain crocodiles as big as 10-feet.


The mugger crocodile or broad-snouted crocodile (scientifically known as Crocodylus palustris) is listed as an endangered species in Schedule 1 of the Wildlife Protection Act.

While the plan may boost tourism around Statue of Unity, the world’s tallest statue, some of the top officials have reportedly been questioning the idea. According to them, removing these crocodiles from Narmada and bringing them back to a human habitat will affect the natural balance.

According to one forest official, the crocodiles will likely be released in a reservoir around the dam but the scale of the evacuation could potentially harm their breeding cycles.


India’s Civil Aviation Department and the Gujarat government have been working on a plan to build a seaplane terminal near Pond 3, also known as Magar talav (crocodile pond).

The seaplane terminal will connect the Sardar Patel statue site with other cities in Gujarat. India launched the seaplane service with much fanfare last year and was inaugurated by PM Narendra Modi.

See also:
The tallest statue in the world cost ₹30 billion to build, ₹500 million to maintain — now the government is spending even more money on advertising it

India is already divided over its gargantuan 'Statue of Unity'