Zoo body’s centenary run across India on July 1

Kolkata, June 25 (IANS) The Zoological Survey of India (ZSI) is organising a run on July 1 throughout India to kick-start its centenary celebrations, its director said here on Thursday.

ZSI officials and staff in 16 regional centres spread across India will participate in the Centenary Run on July 1, which is its foundation day.

In Kolkata, the event will start from the Asiatic Society in Park Street, the place of origin of the ZSI, to the Prani Vigyan Bhawan, the present headquarters in New Alipore, said ZSI director K. Venkataraman.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee will inaugurate the run in the presence of state Minister of Environment and Forest Sudarshan Ghosh Dastidar and state Minister of Sports and Youth Affairs Arup Biswas.

Venkataraman said Prime Minister Narendra Modi will attend the centenary celebration function in the third week of July at the ZSI headquarters and dedicate the “Digital ZSI” — the e-access to ZSI’s documents — to the country on 100 years of faunal inventory of India.

The premier institution on animal taxonomy — the science of naming, describing and classifying organisms — under the ministry of environment, forests and climate change was established on July 1, 1916, to promote survey, exploration, research and documentation on animal taxonomy and has identified more than 96,000 species of animals.

The ZSI maintains more than four million zoological specimens and many of them are over 200 years old.

The e-archive of its collections, which includes documents dating back to the 19th century and specimens that are more than 200 years old, will be available to the public at the click of a button.

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