88 feet high idol of Lord Hanuman at Shani Maharaj temple at Lambloo, in district Hamirpur unveiled today by Chief Minister of the state. While addressing the congregation assembled on the occasion, Chief Minister complimented the temple committee for developing the Shani Temple complex into a prominent and sacred destination which would help devotees carry their devotional services more conveniently.
Emphasising the importance of religious tourism, Dhumal said that the State had won three more CNBC Awards for tourism promotion activities in the State during past year, thereby making Himachal Pradesh a safe, attractive and best state to traveling. He said that Shimla had won Best Destination Award for the third time consecutively and additionally State had also won Eco-Tourism Award. He said that with the complete ban on polythene carry bags, the state had emerged a neat and clean destination in the country. He said that compared to the total population of 68.5 lakh population the number of tourists visiting state had doubled to over 1.32 crore which included record number of foreigners who numbered 4.53 lakh which was highest in any state of the country.
Chief Minister lauded the efforts of everyone involved directly and indirectly in tourism promotion activities. He said that Himachal Pradesh happened to be a tourist state and every individual was directly or indirectly connected in building the image of the State with the visiting tourists by extending them traditional Himachali hospitality. He underlined the need to develop inherent quality amongst the young citizens to learn the traditional way of hospitality which could add to the tourism promotion activities in coming years. He said that religious tourism was on the increase with every passing year and the state government was also creating best of the infrastructure of basic amenities to facilitate visits of devotees. He said that the State Government had denotified the Shani Maharaj temple with a view to respect the religious sentiments of the devotees in the area.
Chief Minister appealed to the people to honour and respect religious sentiments of the people and extend best of the courtesy to the faith they follow. He said that Himachal Pradesh had many prominent seats of deities which were being visited by devotees from different parts of the country and abroad as well. He said that the culture of unity in diversity was the basic nature of the country. He said that the state Government was giving added emphasiss to extend tourism activities to the rural areas where Home Stay scheme had been launched to acquaint visitors with the culture, tradition and life style of the state. He said that Home Stay Units were free from any commercial charges. Dhumal said that more check dams would be constructed in the district to increase the ground water level which with earlier endeavours had helped in alleviating the ground water level by two meters. He said that such an effort had helped local farmers cultivate cash crops, off season vegetables etc. to boost their farm income prospectus. Pyare Lal Sharma, Chairman, APMC, welcomed the Chief Minister on behalf of the Temple Committee and thanked him for unveiling the idol of Lord Hanuman. He thanked for sanctioning 10 bedded hospital for Lambloo which would facilitate people with medical services. Ishwar Dass Dhiman, Education Minister, Urmil Thakur, MLA, Sarla Sharma, Chairperson, Zila Parishad, M.C.Parmar, Chairman-cum-Managing Director, HP Ex-Servicemen Welfare Corporation, Rasil Singh Mankotia, Chairman, Kangra Central Cooperative Bank, Des Raj Sharma, President, District Hamirpur BJP, Rajender Singh, Deputy Commissioner, Kuldeep Sharma, Superintendent of Police, Brig. R.S. Pathania, Director, Sainik Welfare Department, Madan Lal, Pradhan Temple Committee and other senior officers and prominent people of the area were present on the occasion.