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The Barot Valley – A victim of the false promises and deceptive assurance given by the political leaders.

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The Barot Valley – A heaven like tourist spot cries for maintenance for over a decade

The Himachal assembly polls are nearing and 53 candidates left the battle field on the last date for withdrawing the nominations, and now we are left with 469 candidates in the arena. The list of the promises has been printed on fine quality paper and is being circulated through manifestos. One of the highlights of these manifestos is the development of the tourism industry in Himachal. However, these promises mostly remain printed on the manifesto and rarely see the real world action. Here is one example.A resident of the Joginder Nagar wrote to HW along with images and related URLs of the Chauhar Valley, better known as Barot valley – a beautiful tourist spot located in the Joginder Nagar, District Mandi of Himachal Pradesh. According to him, the Barot Valley has a great potential as a perfect destination for tourists , but the government is not paying any attention towards its maintenance and development. Interestingly, Kaul Sigh, former Congress chief who has filed nomination from the Darang constituency for the polls scheduled for next month, was approached many times with the issue of the bridge in the valley, which fell down in 1995 due to a flood. However, nothing was delivered accept assurance. The complainer further puts it in the following words:

The original Text of the complaint sent to HW:

“Well the problem is that government is not taking care of this place, which can be developed as a tourist hub Here are the photos with description.

In this image you can see the left side pillars of the broken bridge. This bridge was broken in flood 1995 and yet not built again. Kaul Singh several time assured that they are working on this matter, but nothing ever actually done for solve the issue . On the right side you can see a small temporary bridge made of woods. This bridge flows away every time when there is a little flood in Uhl river and villagers have to go round about 3KM long to reach the other side – the Multhan village (Multhan village is in Distt. Kangra , Baijnath block on the other side of the bridge)

broken-bridge-broat-valley

In this picture you can see the poor condition of the roads, that leads from Barot to Mayot village and was constructed about 6 years ago. The condition of the road is worse than a dirt road. It’s a shame to have such a lethargic governing body.

damaged-road-barot-valley-Joginder Nagar

This road leads from Barot to Bada Gram village ( in Kangra district ) was constructed approximately 20 years ago and yet no better than the ruins of devastated place Many time you have to cross a vehicle by driving over the water streams due to the lack of the bridge over it.”
barot-valley-Joginder Nagar

The valley is not fortunate enough to get any attention inspite of being full of potential of earning dollars for the state. Those who live in the valley or travel to the valley faces tough road and broken bridges.Why is that, the cries of public has been ignored even over a decade. That’s what the both parties calls development. It’s a single case, but it does show the attitude of these political parties, which lures the public with promises before the election and then turns their back to them once the elections are over. We suggest, now we should wait for the results of the polls to be held on November/4/2012 and then expect the new government to attend the issue as Mr. Kaul Singh didn’t find it considerable enough.

ECO-Tourism

Himachal seeks Rs. 300 crore from Centre to promote religious tourism circuit and eco-adventure tourism

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Religious Tourism in Himachal PRadesh

Shimla: The Himachal Pradesh Government has urged the Union Minister for Tourism, K.J. Alphons to sanction three schemes worth Rs. 300 crore to promote religious tourism circuit and eco-adventure tourism in the state.

The Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, during a meeting in New Delhi, apprised the Minister that Himachal was also a major centre of religious tourism and religious tourism circuits will be developed here to provide devotees more facilities.

The Chief Minister also invited Union Minister to Himachal and said that he himself will take him to the tourist destinations of the State. K.J. Alphons whole-heartedly accepted the invitation.

Chief Minister also urged the Centre to provide funds generously for widespread publicity of tourism sites in the state.

The Union Minister of State for Tourism assured the Chief Minister that the Union Government will extend all possible support to this hill state for exploitation and expansion of its tourism potential.

The Chief Minister said that the focus should be on tourism in the state, which was not given before. However, now the state government is giving special emphasis to strengthening infrastructure in virgin natural places, he said.

Himachal has immense potential for adventure tourism and adventure sports like mountaineering, biking, river rafting, and paragliding and the state is considered as a paradise for these adventure sports.

However, it is true that the governments have done very little to polish and maintain the tourism sector.

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Amidst wild animals, without electricity, phone or clock, an old woman lives alone in Great Himalayan National Park

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Great-Himalayan-National-Park

SHIMLA- Have you ever thought of living your entire life in wild, without electricity and electronics, and even a clock? How about the Great National Himalayan Park that is recognized by UNESCO for its incredibly rich bio-diversity? The 754 square kilometer National Park houses 31 mammal species including leopards, the Himalayan black and brown bear, and the ghost cat – snow leopards. There are over 300 bird species, reptiles, hundreds of insect species amid rich Himalayan flora and fauna.  It sounds more like a Hollywood adventure movie. Is it possible to live in such a harmony with nature?  

Indian woman Living in forest alone

Photo: GHNP

There is no habitation for miles as all natives were removed to a separate buffer –zone when the area was declared as a National Park. However, there was a woman, who refused to depart from the nature. She has been sharing the forest with wild animals for decades now. 

Woman lives in himalayan national park

Photo: IANS

So it’s not entirely true that there is no habitation inside the park. An 83-years-old lady, Chatri Devi, still lives in her clay-house, all alone.

Woman lives along in forestPhoto: Xerxespa
She doesn’t have electricity or a phone. She doesn’t even possess a clock and calculate time by following sun. This seclusion, complete isolation and wild animals do not scare her at all.

Leopards and black bears do come near to my house, even with their cubs, but they never attacked me as I am not their prey. Why should I be afraid of them? They go on their way (pointing towards a thick forest adjoining her house),

Chatri Devi says.

chatri devi GHNP

Clay House of Chatri Devi in GHNP/ Photo: Gaurav Chaudhary

It’s not that she doesn’t have a family or is bound to live here. Rather, she has a big family comprising of three married sons, their wives, and nine grandchildren, who live in a village outside the park. It takes about one and half hour walk uphill to reach her from their place.

Great Himalayan National Park

Photo: GHNP

The only reason for her to choose this life in the park is that she loves it as she has a strong emotional attachment to the house she had build with her husband decades ago and small-piece of farmland where the couple grew wheat, barely, potato, corn and rajmah. She is the only one person who refused to relocate when the the area was declared as the GHNP in 1999. 

chatri devi in great himalayan national park

Xerxespa.Blogspot

Her death is the only way to separate her from the house, she said.

When asked if she ever gets bored, she replies,

These birds and animals are also part of my family. Every winter ‘jujuranas’ or western tragopans and gorals descend here. So I ejoy watching them.

These days, as she is very old now, one of the family members come to visit her everyday after taking that hours long uphill walk to ensure she is doing fine and returns by evening. 

She makes a remarkable example of complete harmony with nature and its creature, away from modernised and way far complex, stressful urban life. 

About The Himalayan National Park

Top Image: IANS

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India’s first Igloo hotel in Manali is the fresh tourist attraction in Himachal

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Manali Igloo Stay 4

SHIMLA- Manali Igloo Stay is the fresh tourist attraction not only in Himachal Pradesh, but in entire India. First-of-its- kind, made entirely of snow, the Igloo houses are owned by Kelinga Himalyan Adventures, a winter-sports and travel company that offers ski courses and treks. The company, that comprises of local youth Tashi and Vikas, had been looking for good snowfall to give the concept a try.  It’s eco-friendly, as it used no non-biodegradable material (snow), there would be no waste after it’ll meltdown.

Himachal Igloo hotel

This year, it snowed heavy and temperature was also favorable to build Igloo houses at Sethan village, near Prini. Each structure is made of compressed snow and measures 8×9 foot in width and 6.5 feet in height. The Igloos were opened at the end of the January, 2017. 

The igloos are built by Tashi and Vikas with their friends.

When we discussed this concept with our friends, they were so excited that they spent hours with us and even helped us build them,

the duo told to an English daily.

Igloo hotel himachal

The visitors are provided with bedding, table and lights. Accommodation is available only on a twin-sharing basis as there are only two structures. For sleeping, the visitors are given warm feather sleeping bags and a hot water bottle.
Manali Igloo Stay 2

The temperature is chilling outside, but apparently inside is comparatively warmer. The Igloos can sure save visitors from cold winds outside. So, the idea is quite practical.

Igloo Manali

The company hopes that the Igloos will stand for another month before it begins to meltdown with change in season. The rates vary from 4,500 to 7,000 depending upon different packages.
Manali Igloo Stay 3

Igloos are mainly found in colder parts of the world like Switzerland, Canada, Finland etc. Definitely, it would be entirely a unique experience to find out what it feels to live in an Igaloo. No need to say, these Igloos would be available only in winters, hardly for a couple of months.

That’s not all; visitor can try to build their own Igloo houses at a height of about 9,000 feet, somewhere near Hampta pass.

This year, we have introduced two igloos on a trial basis and it has been successful. Lower areas of Manali, including the town, are warmer than Sethan. We plan to to get this concept registered with the tourism department so that they (officials) can also help us promote it, especially in rural areas,

they said.

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