Nakshatra Van is a park created by the Jharkhand Forest Department in front of the Jharkhand Raj Bhawan (Governor's Residence) in Ranchi, the capital of Jharkhand, a state of India. A nakshatra or lunar mansion is one of the 27 or 28 divisions of the sky, identified by the prominent star(s) in them, that the Moon passes through during its monthly cycle, as used in Hindu astronomy and astrology. Each Nakshatra is associated with a Zodiac, which is related to celestial bodies and their movements in sky. Hindu Astrologers believe that each constellation of the zodiac is associated with a tree. Those trees are of medicinal, social, aesthetic or economic value.
Nakshatra Van, Ranchi boasts to be a park unique in its own ways. The park can be said to be divided in various sections. The park is centered around a circle, which is a representation of the various Nakshatras on the ground. The circle is divided in arcs precisely according to the angles, these zodiacs subtend on earth. Tree of a particular zodiac has been planted in its corresponding arc. At the center of this circle, there is a musical fountain which has a huge pot in which the water gets collected. The park has beautiful flowers planted all along the pathway, and has sprawling lawns as well. There is a section for Medicinal Plants in the park which has some of the rare medicinal plants. At the center of this section, a sleeping statue of Dhanvantari is placed. There are swings and other amusement toys for kids in the Children section. The architecture and greenery of the park is quite picturesque. There are various sculptures in the park, which has adequate sitting benches for its visitors. The entrance and security of the park is taken care of by the Jharkhand State Forest Development Corporation (JSFDC). The best time for visiting the park is in early evening, preferably around 6:30 PM, when the park has a splendid look under the lights.
Nakshatra Van was established in Ranchi on 2May 2003 in an area of 7.5 Acre (approx). It was handed over to J.S.F.D.C. by the Forest Department on 26 June 2004.
Creation of the Nakshatra Van was unique in many ways. It was not just about planting trees, which is the core business of the Forest Department. It was about linking trees to popular belief. It required a great amount of studies about celestial activities, planetary and solar movements and mythological believes, and a very considerate implementation.
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