By Sunil Sonker
Mussoorie, 31 Jan: Tourism Secretary Dilip Javalkar launched a cleanliness drive on the Mussoorie-Rajpur trek route, here, today. Many trekkers participated in this cleanliness campaign. The Tourism Secretary sought suggestions of the people on preserving and beautifying the track. He inspected the route on foot. He issued directions to the District Tourism Officer regarding the trekking route. He also asked for a cleanliness drive to be undertaken from time to time on this route. Javalkar said that cleanliness was a national campaign. He also mentioned the historical significance of the route. It was also important to preserve its natural beauty and work out what facilities ought to be provided to the trekkers.
He revealed that a committee would be formed to develop and conserve trekking routes with the help of the local people. He pointed out that on the Mussoorie-Rajpur route, there is no shelter for rest, viewing points or toilets. Experience on developing this route would provide a model for other treks across Uttarakhand.
He revealed that Rs 60 lakhs had been given for the development of the Mussoorie Rajpur trekking route to the Municipal Council, Mussoorie, by the Tourism Department. A proposal had been sought from the Municipal Administration for the construction of modern toilets. He also mention the railway tunnel on the route from the British era, which could also become a centre of attraction for tourists.
Local residents Tajbhar Singh Rawat, Rita Bahuguna, Smita, Dr Rishi Raj and Shalini, however, wanted that this trek route ought not to be tampered with in the name of development.
Present on this occasion were Deputy Director, Tourism, Yogendra Gangwar, District Tourism Officer Jaspal Singh Chauhan, Municipal Executive Officer ML Shah, Health Inspector Virendra Bisht, Kiran Rana and officials of the Tourism Department.