By Our Staff Reporter
CHAMOLI, 13 Dec: Minister Satpal Maharaj inaugurated and laid the foundation stones of several development schemes worth crores of rupees of the Panchayati Raj and Public Works Departments at the District Headquarters, Gopeshwar, today.
Emphasising on increasing winter pilgrimage and tourism, the Tourism Minister said that, apart from Chardham Yatra, other religious and tourist places should also be developed. He instructed that arrangements should be made to show people aarti/pujas from the winter abodes of Panch Badri and Kedar, promote skiing in Auli and other areas, and land should be identified to build an airport in the district. Also, a helipad should be made to connect tourist sites with air connectivity. Better facilities should be provided to tourists through homestays in frontier villages. Religious and tourist places should be connected as a circuit.
Maharaj directed the officers to take special care of quality in the works conducted under the Jal Jeevan Mission. New sources of water should be tapped under the scheme. He also stressed on increasing the income of the panchayats. Instructions were given for branding, packaging and marketing of local products to increase the income of farmers. The Forest Department was asked to carry out a special campaign to plant fruit bearing trees in the forest areas, so that crops are not harmed by wild animals.
District Magistrate Himanshu Khurana apprised the Cabinet Minister of the progress on various development schemes operated in the district. On this occasion Karnprayag MLA Anil Nautiyal, Tharali MLA Bhupal Ram Tamta, BJP District President Ramesh Maikhuri, Cooperative Bank President Gajendra Rawat along with other public representatives including District Magistrate Himanshu Khurana, Superintendent of Police Praminder Dobal, CDO Dr Lalit Narayan Mishra and District Level Officers of all departments were present.