Advertisement

HindustanTimes Thu,02 Oct 2014

Eco-fragile Sandakphu vulnerable

Arpit Basu, Hindustan Times  Kolkata, June 21, 2013
First Published: 08:37 IST(21/6/2013) | Last Updated: 08:40 IST(21/6/2013)

The disaster in Uttarakhand has sent alarm bells ringing in another eco-fragile Himalayan region closer home — the Darjeeling Hills. And the focus is on Sandakphu, a quiet retreat up the hills, about 50 km from Darjeeling.

Advertisement

Experts say indiscriminate development in the hill town and the growing number of tourists are posing a grave threat to Sandakphu. Guesthouses, hotels and shops have come up, many of them illegal.

“We paid a formal visit to Sandakphu and observed that the Singalila National Park, located on the edge of Sandakphu, is in a bad condition. A large number of huts has come up, posing a threat to the region,” said Bharat Prakash Rai, convener of the Darjeeling chapter of the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (Intach).

Intach will soon write to the state tourism department, advising officials on how to restore the natural heritage of Sandakphu. Intach says the first step will be to restrict the number of visitors to the area. “Trekkers’ huts have been built randomly. Trees have been cut to build them. As a result, a portion of the forest is almost barren ,” Rai said.


Advertisement
more from Kolkata

Jadavpur varsity website 'hacked', claims registrar

With Jadavpur University students demanding the vice chancellor's resignation over a molestation case, an apology message attributed to the VC was on Saturday posted on the varsity website, which official sources denied claiming the website has been hacked.
Advertisement
Most Popular
Advertisement
Advertisement
Copyright © 2014 HT Media Limited. All Rights Reserved