Jamshedpur: Five African lion cubs presented by a South African zoo to the Tata Steel Zoological Society here arrived in the steel city on Thursday, TSZS Director Vipul Chakraborty said.

Two male and three female cubs, all about a year-old, came from the National Zoological Gardens, Pretoria, Rajnish Kumar, Member of the Managing Committee of TSZS, said.

The animals were transported here from Kolkata airport following its arrival from South Africa.

The cubs would be kept under quarantine here for 30 days, which was mandatory under Government of India rules, before they would be exhibited to visitors, said Kumar said.

A team of veterinary doctors from Kolkata zoo will visit here to check up the conditions of the cubs, which have to first travel from Johannesburg to Singapore and from there to Kolkata in another aircraft, Kumar said.

The proposal to gift the cubs was taken by NZG after a team comprising of Dr Abeeda Dawood, Conservation Manager, and Eugene Marais, General Curator of the Zoo, visited Tata Zoo in October.

This was the first time after Independence that pure African lions arrived in India, Kumar said adding none of the Indian Zoos currently exhibit pure African lions.


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