October 19, 2022 – The Forest Department has taken an unique initiative to keep Pindari, Sunderdhunga, Kafni glaciers clean. Now the trekkers have to bring back their garbage from the glaciers. Failure to do so may cost them thousands of rupees. The effect of this initiative of the department is also visible. Trackers going on trekking have started bringing garbage with them and depositing it in the forest department post.
Trekkers from all over the country and abroad visit the district’s trekking routes every year. The local people also go on the trekking routes for cattle picking etc. With this, a lot of garbage used to accumulate in the glaciers due to the carrying of essential goods. A special drive had to be carried out to clean it. To solve this problem, the Forest Department has now made a provision of cleanliness protection fee for the trekkers.
Ranger Shankar Dutt Pandey of Glacier Range told that the demand draft in the name of Forest Department is being deposited from 15th September as security fee from the trekkers. The fee is Rs 2000 for local trekkers, Rs 5000 for domestic tourists, trekkers and Rs 10,000 for foreigners.
All the trekkers are being urged to bring their garbage with them. The demand draft is returned to the trackers on return of garbage. If the garbage is not brought, the amount will be deposited in the departmental account. The impact of this campaign is visible, he said. All the trekkers are returning with garbage with them.
This campaign started to save the glaciers from dirt is having a positive effect. Trackers are returning with their garbage. Earlier very few trekkers used to bring garbage. The garbage of the trackers is deposited in the forest department post and handed over to Kapkot Nagar Panchayat for disposal.Himanshu Baghri, DFO, Bageshwar Forest Division