The Bold Voice of J&K

Atal Setu, a gateway to world of tourism

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Shiv Kumar Padha

Lowang village is located 13 kmts. towards north on the Basohli Bani Bhaderwah road. It is 1,760 meter above the sea level. This village is known for its pleasant and refreshing environment and is counted among the tourist spots of the area. The population of the village comprises of Hindus and Muslims who live together just like brothers. The amity of the two communities is a living example in the modern age.
Dhaggar is 20 kmts. towards west of Bani and is located at 2,000 meters above the sea level. Dhagger is encircled by the beautiful places like Drood, Sarola, Thalotha, Samloga. The vast and thick forests of Piceamorinda (Tose), Abiespindrow (Padtal) the lush green meadows grown with multi colored wild flowers, streams and springs of cold crystal clear water and the pleasant weather of the place add to its beauty. Panyalag, Khajar, Doogan, Doolangal are the beautiful and worth seeing places en-route Dhagger Bani Road. The trekking rout from Bani to Sarthal via Sandroon passes through the enchanting valley of Sandroon, thick forests of Deodar, vast green meadows of Sargarh Dhar. The places of pilgrimage of Bani include Jaurian Mata, Shakti Mata Temple of Bani and Sheetla Mata Temple attracts a good number of devotees every year. Jaurian Mata Shrine is situated 2,400 meters above the sea level and is 48 kmts. away from Basohli. There are forests of Banj, Tose and Deodar on either sides of the route from Banjal to the Shrine. The climate of the Shrine is very pleasant. There are vast stretches of grassy plains full of colored wild flowers. The entire way to Mata Jaurian Shrine remains shrouded by the mist and many times the sun and the mist are seen playing hide and seek with each other. Jaurian Mata Shrine is both a pilgrimage as well as a famous tourist place in Bani and Basohli.
About 66 per cent of the total geographical area of Bani is covered under forests. In spite of huge forest wealth the natives of the area are poor. The jungles of Bani are rich in valuable timber, medicinal bushes and herbs. Among the herbs, Pateesh, Mohri, Dhoop, Beldona, MushakBala, Kuth, Banafsha, Jangli Podeena, Barian, Brahmi, Bhang, Rasont Bush etc. are few which are found in the forests of Bani in abundance. There are varieties of wild animals found in the forests of Bani. Out of them few species area at the brink of extinction. Leopard, black bear, musk deer, wild goat (Karth), Pizad, Langoor, wild cat and Sahe (Porcupine) among birds, Chakor,Teeter, Koel, Neel, Kolser, etc. are found in good number in the forests.
Though the areas of Basohli, Bani and Bhadarwah are rich in tourist and natural wealth yet the people of the area are poor due to un-employment. They are still compelled to live miserable life without means of earning except the yield from the small farms. As such it becomes the moral duty of the State Government to develop tourism of the region en route Basohli, Bani and Bhadarwah to its fullest capacity so that these places be brought on the tourism map of the State because completion of the bridge Atal Setu over RSD has thrown open the floodgates for the tourists from other parts of country. The development of the tourism will usher in an era of prosperity of the entire region by filling the pockets of the people and the coffers of the State.
While in leisure mood the flash back of the days spent amidst the natural environment of Bani, Basohli and Doda, the feel of the wind on your face and the warmth of the sun on your hand and the wet feet in the mountain steam solaces and relieves you of the daily fatigue even if you are sitting in the mid of a desert. Quoting W. Words Worth ” For often, when on my couch I lie, in vacant or in pensive mood, they flash up on that inward eye, which is the bliss of solitude, and then my heart with pleasure feels, and dances with the daffodils.”
(Concluded)

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