Shimla — The Himachal Pradesh government has set the ball rolling to develop Chanshal valley in Rohru subdivision of Shimla district into a world-class tourist destination.
The civil administration in Rohru has submitted a detailed plan to the district administration, stressing on the need to improve road connectivity to the area, located around 14 kilometres from the main Shimla town.
The Chanshal Pass links Dodra Kwar with Rohru (Chirgaon), and sits atop the 14,830-ft high Chanshal Peak, which is the highest peak in Shimla district.
Sub-divisional magistrate BR Sharma said big projects such as promotion of skiing and ropeway to Chanshal are already under consideration but the administration has suggested a few more activities.
Green check post to check garbage disposal
The biggest challenge before the authorities is likely to be that of solid waste management once the area is developed into a tourist hub. To tackle this, the administration has proposed to set up a green check-post, where Rs.500 would be charged from every vehicle crossing through. The travelers would be refunded Rs.450 if they bring back their garbage, else the entire amount would be forfeited. For disposal of the collected waste, land filling mechanism will be adopted until a proper solid waste management system comes up.
Locals to be trained as paragliding pilots
The plan also proposes to develop Chanshal peak into a paragliding site. It has been suggested to depute a committee of experts to work out the modalities, such as take-off and landing points. There is also a plan to use the 15-km river stretch between Mandali and Sandour for rafting while the reservoir of Sawara-Kuddu Hydropower project could be used for boating.
Services of Hatkoti Temple Trust are proposed for management of boating facilities. With a lake, temple and beautiful forest cover, Kharshali is another centre of attraction. Located at a distance of 4km from the main Chanshal Road, it will serve as a gateway point.
Government to develop trails
Chanshal is at a commanding location with breathtaking all around view. The authorities propose to establish three to four site-seeing points on the peak and equip it with telescopes and proper toilet facilities. For maintenance, local youth clubs will be roped in. For the benefit of trekkers who frequent the famous trails such as Tangnu to Chandernahan, Jakha-Jiskoon to Sangla and Chanshal to Lake Saru, facilities such as resting and camping sites will be set up. The temple of
Shikru Devta, the chief deity of the area, is to be renovated and local traditions, costumes, cuisines, songs, dance etc are to be promoted and publicised to add to the attraction.
Heli taxi services for peak
The administration also proposes to start heli-taxi services to the peak in summers. An annual Chanshal Festival, proposed for May end when the tourist season is at its peak, will also help popularise the destination.
A committee is suggested to be formed to work out the activities of the festival and also make logistical arrangements. It also proposes a disaster management plan for the region.
To increase the curiosity of tourists and make it a ‘must-visit’ destination, the administration proposes to put up hoardings depicting the beauty of Chanshal on the Kalka-Shimla highway.