Tourists learn no lesson from Thalout tragedy
The 2014 Beas river tragedy, which claimed the lives of 24 students of a Hyderabad-based engineering college and a tour operator after a sudden surge of river water released upstream from Larji hydro electric project, has failed to change much.Updated: Jun 08, 2015 22:18 IST
The 2014 Beas river tragedy, which claimed the lives of 24 students of a Hyderabad-based engineering college and a tour operator after a sudden surge of river water released upstream from Larji hydro electric project, has failed to change much.
A year after the incident on June 8, 2014, tourists still carelessly venture into the river for recreation, showing scant regard for their safety.
The enormous tragedy had led the state government to ask the administrations of both Kullu and Mandi districts to take preventive measures to save precious lives.
As a result, warning boards cautioning visitors against the possibility of sudden increase in water level of Beas had been erected at several points on the Mandi-Kullu-Manali national highway along the river. Besides, fences were also set up along the river at various points. But these have failed to turn away tourists, who even climb over the fences to spend some time in the river.
As result, since last year's incident, six more people have been washed away in the river current.
Talking to HT, Kullu deputy commissioner (DC) Rakesh Kanwar accepted that despite strict warnings from the district administration and erection of warning boards, tourists were ignoring the possible danger of stepping into river water.
"Venturing into the river is completely prohibited due to safety concerns. We urge tourists to refrain from activities that may put their life in danger," Kanwar said.
He added, "For tourists' recreation, the district administration has developed a park at Mohal, 4km from Kullu town, along the Beas, where tourists can enjoy the panoramic view of the river from a distance, while another park will be developed near Bandrol."