Over-tourism is wreaking havoc on the once-pristine hill stations of Himachal Pradesh. Long queues of traffic, haphazard construction, and illegal eateries now mar the serene landscapes of Shimla, Kufri, and Fagu. The Dhalli-Kufri road, a vital artery for locals and tourists, is bearing the brunt of this onslaught. The government must take immediate and stringent actions to preserve the natural beauty and livability of these cherished hill stations.

Choked Roads and Harassed Commuters

Shimla, the queen of hills, is now synonymous with traffic congestion. The Sanjauli-Dhalli Bypass, a crucial route for daily commuters, is plagued by traffic jams that can take hours to clear. The situation is exacerbated along the Dhalli-Kufri road, where traffic has become a daily nightmare. Despite the mounting inconvenience, no significant steps have been taken by the government to address this issue. The once smooth-flowing roads of Shimla city are now bottlenecked with vehicles, making daily commutes a harrowing experience.

The Menace of Illegal Eateries

Adding to the traffic woes are the illegal eateries and temporary shops that have mushroomed along the Dhalli-Kufri-Fagu road. These establishments not only choke the already congested roads but also operate without any regulatory oversight. The food served at these eateries often fails to meet basic hygiene standards, posing a health risk to unsuspecting customers. Moreover, the trash generated by these illegal setups is indiscriminately dumped along the highway, further degrading the environment.

The local administration’s failure to regulate these illegal businesses is glaring. These makeshift shanties continue to thrive, unchecked, transforming the picturesque roads into eyesores. It is crucial to investigate who is behind these illegal operations and enforce stringent measures to dismantle them before they become a permanent blight on the landscape.

Environmental Degradation

The environmental impact of over-tourism and illegal constructions is profound. The once verdant slopes of Kufri, famous for their snow-capped beauty, are now a tale of the past. Rampant, unregulated construction is stripping away the tree cover, with government authorities seemingly in deep slumber. The encroachment of illegal shops further accelerates this degradation, erasing the natural allure that draws tourists to these locations.

The unchecked spread of these establishments not only diminishes the aesthetic value of the region but also poses a significant threat to the local ecosystem. The trash and pollution they generate disrupt the delicate balance of nature, leading to long-term environmental damage.

Urgent Need for Action

The situation demands immediate intervention. The government must implement stringent policies to curb over-tourism and regulate traffic. Effective measures to dismantle illegal eateries and shops along the Dhalli-Kufri road are crucial. Ensuring that all food establishments adhere to proper hygiene standards and have a systematic waste disposal mechanism is non-negotiable.

Preserving the natural beauty of Shimla, Kufri, and Fagu should be a top priority. This involves regulating human activities and actively restoring and protecting the environment. Planting trees, maintaining green belts, and imposing strict regulations on construction are essential steps to rejuvenate the region.

The hills of Himachal Pradesh, renowned for their serene beauty, are choked by over-tourism and illegal encroachments. The government’s apathy towards these pressing issues is alarming. Swift and decisive action is needed to restore the splendour of Shimla, Kufri, and Fagu. These hill stations risk losing their charm and ecological balance forever without immediate intervention. The time to act is now before it is too late to turn the tide.