Uttarakhand: Are we waiting for disasters to happen?

Amalendu Upadhyaya
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The government of Uttarakhand must act fast to clear the path of Dhauli Ganga rive

Uttarakhand government must act fast to clear the path of Dhauli Ganga river about two kilometres ahead of village Neeti and about one kilometre from Ghamsali village, about 90 kilometres from Joshi math town in district Chamoli. The creation of an artificial lake due to the throwing of muck and mud can create a catastrophic situation like what happened on February 7th, 2021

Rishiganga Dhauli Ganga tragedy at Tapovan and Raini village in which over 200 people lost their life.

I visited the place yesterday and today too. I saw the pains and agony of villagers in Raini where Gaura Devi fought valiantly against the timber mafia and gave birth to the Chipko movement and brought respect to Uttarakhand and its social movements.

The Uttarakhand government has no sense

Today, Raini villagers are facing an existential crisis and the government has no sense of respect to protect and restore a village that became the identity of Uttarakhand.

What is Raini’s crisis?

Raini’s crisis is actually brought by the developmental model being pursued by those who think Pahadis know little about their needs. It’s an imposed model with little respect for the cultural sensitivities of Uttarakhand people and that of the environment.

The continuous throwing of muck As well as big boulders, concrete etc in these beautiful rivers is not only a threat to them but also it can bring bigger disaster in the region as happened in early February this year.

The government must not wait for disasters to happen and ensure that the big corporate lobby that wants to gain by exploiting the vast resources of Uttarakhand for their commercial gains, must follow supreme Court guidelines and take deep respect to the beautiful landscape of Uttarakhand.

A visit to both Bhagirathi valley and now in Alaknanda valley and Dhauli Ganga valley will pain anyone caring for the environment and identity of Uttarakhand.

Can Uttarakhand be imagined without mountains and rivers?

Without rivers and mountains, there cannot be a Uttarakhand. If the state care for it in a real sense then it needs proper monitoring of these developmental project. Penalise them for violation of environmental norms and guidelines. The way our beautiful landscape has been maltreated is simply devastating.

The Chardham national highway is still incomplete and roads in many places absolutely dangerous. The government should update about the status of these roads so that people know in advance and take a proper decision

Vidya Bhushan Rawat

December 2nd, 2021


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