From the Editor’s Desk
People’s aspirations evaporate when agitations start stalling developmental schemes. Himachal’s model of development is now facing agitation thus putting a question mark on development schemes. Stir at Manali is testing facility for tourists and environment safety while changing the livelihood of taxi operators. Similar sentiments have come to the fore in the expansion scheme of Gaggal Airport. Himachal’s towns are witnessing rapid urbanisation whereas road transport is assuming threatening proportion. Religious shakipeeths located in Himachal receive devotees more than double the capacity they can accommodate. How can you describe religious tourism if it takes hours for an devotee to pay obeisance at a shaktipeeth? There is a lack of will to focus on tourism even as three dozen villages around Chintpurni Temple earn livelihood due to religious tourism. Work on Chintpurni Temple Development Scheme has not been initiated because a section has blocked all roads for it. Deot Sidh temple Development Scheme faces similar situation because development will change entire geography. The society is not understanding the need of expansion of these temples whereas earnings can develop temples on the pattern of Vaishnoi Devi or Shirdi. The increasing number of tourists in Himachal every year has not been understood properly. The society has started cornering the expansion plans of Gaggal Airport. We agree that pain of displacement is unbearable but state needs people’s support for its development. Are we contended with installation of a hand pump or development of a school only? We will have to adopt a positive approach towards infrastructure development for employment generation instead of posing obstacles. We can stall possibility of rope way up to Rohtang or expansion of Gaggal Airport but is it right? Who will catalyze the government if there is a need to convert main roads into four or six lanes? Developmental needs don’t change based on political ideologies and mutual confrontation. We want every facility but are not ready to pay anything for it.
Thought of the Week
* Imagination is more important than knowledge…