A soaring 42 degree Celsius on Monday, low voltage or no power, dirty water supply topped with traffic snarls seem to have made life miserable in the once salubrious environs of Dehra Dun.
The conditions are no better in Haridwar, Mussoorie, Haldwani or Naini Tal where the massive summer tourist rush, while making the business community happy, has left the locals gasping for water and power.
The tourism department officials seem to be happy at the arrival of a very large number of pilgrims for the Char Dham Yatra. But hundreds of pilgrims using public transport can be seen sweating it out at Haridwar and Rishikesh with no buses available. “The few buses plying are far too less when compared to the rush”, admitted a senior official adding that efforts were being made to rope in more buses.
In the confusion, unscrupulous taxi and hotel operators are charging exorbitantly high tariff.
In Dehra Dun, the locals and tourists seem to be thronging the water bodies -- Sahasradhara known for its sulphur springs, Lachiwala where the Forest Department maintains a good wide canal and Guchu Pani where chilled water flows out of caves.
‘Perhaps the Government would lay emphasis on planting select varieties of shade and fruits bearing trees like jamun, mango, amla, kachnar and mulberry along the roads rather than allowing the Doon valley to convert into one big cement and concrete jungle and also shift the offices of the Capital to some open area to decongest the city before it is too late', observed noted environmentalist Avdhash Kaushal.