Aizawl: Mizoram Orchid Centre, the state’s first orchidarium, was inaugurated on Thursday at Maubuang village under Aibawk rural development block near Aizawl, an official said on Friday. 

State Rural Development minister Lalruatkima, who opened the center said it will serve an important purpose in preserving different species of orchids in the state and open new commercial and employment opportunities for orchids farmers, which in turn will lead to economic development as prices of orchids are high in the markets, the official said.

The main objective of the centre is collection, preservation, multiplication by tissue culture (growing) and studying the nature of various orchid species in the state, he said.

At least 350 species of orchids have been identified in Mizoram, out of which eight species have medicinal value and many of these orchids (some of them very rare) are now facing extreme danger of extinction due to heavy destruction of habitat or forest areas, according to officials. 

The construction Orchid Centre began in April 2018 under Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission (SPMRM) scheme with the project cost of Rs 3.9 crore.Though completed in May 2019, its inauguration was delayed due to COVID-19 pandemic.

The implementing agency of the centre is Rural Development Department and it will be manned by Zoawi Orchids on Public-Private Partnership (PPP) mode. 

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