The J-K police in collaboration with the Municipal Committee launched a cleaning operation of the historic Rani Talab Park in Jammu and Kashmir’s Batote district after the concerned agencies failed to clean and upkeep the park, said the officials on Friday.
The police team led by Doda-Kishtwar-Ramban Range DIG of J&K Police Sunil Gupta took up the responsibility to clean the Rani Talab Park. The cleaning operations were launched on Friday in collaboration with the Municipal Committee, Batote headed by Ravinder Singh, municipal council president under ‘Shramdaan’ or community service, the officials added.
DIG Gupta said that cleaning of the Park will continue in the future as well.

The DIG further said that he wanted to make the redundant and obsolete park usable for the public who could use it at least for morning and evening walks. He also advised the people to keep their homes and surroundings clean for healthy living.
Ravinder Singh, President, Municipal Council, Batote said, “The Vice President, Municipal Committee Batote, Kewal Krishen Gupta and Batote Beopar Mandal President, Sanjay Gupta also joined the police officials and Municipal staff (sweepers) in cleaning the Rani Talab Park of garbage and de-weeding it.”

“They also cleaned the tiled steps and created some new temporary steps so that the local morning walkers can use it or sit there in the evening,” Singh added.
The priest-cum-caretaker, Chunilal Goswami said that the park is about 105 years old and was built by one of the queens of Raja Pratap Singh.
“It is said that the Rani Talab and a building (rest house) was built by the queen of Raja Pratap Singh about 105 years ago which was used for their stay while travelling between Jammu and Srinagar”, Chunilal said.

Social activist Vijay Kumar Gupta said that the controversy over naming the park has hampered its development.
“Its development has remained mired in the controversy over naming it. The local Hindus wanted it to rename it as Rani Talab while the local Sikhs wanted it to name it after a local soldier Hav. S Swarup Singh, Mahavir Chakra winner who was killed while on duty,” he said. (ANI)