Tattapani will never be the same again as river banks submerge in reservoir
Tattapani, which derived its name from the hot sulphur water springs along the banks of the Sutlej river, will never be the same again as the river banks have submerged in the reservoir of 800 mw Kol Dam.
Facilities, such as bridal paths, no longer exist. Cremation grounds located on the banks have now sunk.
There is no government or village common land left where such facilities can be re-established,
said CL Gupta, retired general manager of the State Civil Supplies Corporation, who lives in Sunni.
Evenings and mornings have become colder, with mercury dipping by 4 to 5 degrees Celsius while foggy conditions prevail during winter.
The drop in temperature and fog are attributed to the reservoir as it increases humidity due to evaporation,
said Met experts.
With banks submerged, those earning a living by supplying sand have been rendered jobless. They used to extract sand from the riverbed and carry it on mules, but now their precious assets have become a liability.
The place was also a major tourist attraction due to hot water springs but now the government would have to introduce activities, such as water sports, said Preeti Sharma, a resident.
The National Thermal Power Corporation, which executed the Kol Dam project, has given funds to the Public Works Department to reconstruct the Sulphur hot water springs but these will be artificial and the natural springs which were part of the heritage are gone forever,
said Kishore Sharma, a resident of Sunni near Tattapani.
The backwaters of the 37-km dam at Tattapani extend right up to Lansu village near the Chaba powerhouse, about 55 km from here. The river banks, which used to be abuzz with religious activity during the month of ‘’Magh’’ (January 13 to February 13), have disappeared.
People would stay at Tattapani for a month or so. Those looking for adventure would visit the place for rafting but this year no such activities would take place.
January 2016 will witness the first ‘’Makar Sankranti’’ after impounding of water in the reservoir and priests are apprehensive about the response of people.