The article, by Ravi Chopra, “The untold story from Uttarakhand” (June 25) has not only summed up the whole story of the recent destruction in Uttarakhand. but also shows how stupidity and breach can hurt large numbers of people. When I was young, I used to visit Uttarakhand every year. I have seen the people described in the article run restaurants, offer ponies for hire, carry luggage, all the while being happy. What they did in May and June and for about four weeks in September and October was what helped sustain them through the rest of the year. It is unfortunate that with their lives now uncertain, these tough yet cheerful men will now have to migrate to the plains where greed and dishonesty will destroy them.
The tragedy in Uttarakhand is the result of massive deforestation. The photographs tell the story. Silt and precious soil, all washed away because there is nothing to hold them back. As the monsoon has arrived early, it is also the right time to plant more trees. Pilgrims to Uttarakhand should be asked to plant trees for each day of their stay.
Respect for the Indian soldier grows with each passing day. They are proving themselves each time there is a calamity or threat, and without any “likes” or “tweets” dedicated to them. Many of us love to blame the government for inaction as soon as there is a problem, but how many of us will join the Armed forces, for instance, to tackle this problem? It is easy to send money for victims in Uttarakhand, but we should introspect on who will tackle these problems after 25 years, considering that the current generation is least interested in national service.
Keywords: Uttarakhand floods, Mandakini valley, flash floods, landslips, Uttarakhand landslides, Himalayan ecosystem, Char Dham yatra, Uttarakhand rescue, disaster management, Indian Army rescue, global warming, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change