Staff Reporter

PALAKKAD: The State Government has sanctioned Rs.47 lakh for renovation and restoration of the rock garden at Malampuzha, one of the major tourism destinations in Kerala.

A proposal was sent in this regard by the District Tourism Promotion Council (DTPC) to the Tourism Department last year.

The action plan said that Nirmithi Kendra, engaged in the construction of the garden during 1993-96, might be entrusted with the renovation in view of its previous experience. The Lalithakala Akademi, fine arts institutions and non-governmental organisations might also be involved for restoring the damaged sculptures and creating new ones.

The Nekchand Foundation, engaged in the conservation of rock gardens worldwide, might be asked to provide volunteer assistance.

There is also a proposal to develop Phase 2 of the garden in the remaining 1.2 hectares of the project area.

The garden at Malampuzha, set up under the guidance and supervision of the sculptor Nekchand Saini, is the first of its kind in South India. The only other rock garden in the country is at Chandigarh, created by Mr. Saini. The garden, inaugurated on January 7, 1996, by the then Chief Minister, A.K. Antony, is made out of non-biodegradable waste material and industrial waste. It is a lesson on recycling of waste, ecosystem, the creative mind and the creative process. The garden has an important message about art and culture that is unique to India.