Victory for priests as Uttarakhand government scraps Chardham Devasthanam Board

Express News Service

DEHRADUN:  The Uttarakhand government plans to build the longest ropeway in the world at an altitude of 11,500 feet above sea level. The 11.5-km-long ropeway will significantly reduce the time taken by pilgrims to reach Kedarnath shrine in Rudraprayag district. At present, the pilgrims have to trek 16 kms from Gaurikund to the shrine, which takes the whole day, while the ropeway will enable them to travel from Sonprayag to Kedarnath in 60 minutes. 

During his visit to Kedarnath on November 5, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said work on ropeways to Kedarnath and Shri Hemkund Sahib would start soon. Uttarakhand tourism secretary Dilip Jawalkar said, “The process to prepare the detailed project report (DPR) for the Kedarnath ropeway has been initiated and the tender will soon be issued to start the work.”

According to S K Jain, consultant for the Kedarnath ropeway project, the earlier plan was to build a ropeway from Gaurikund to Kedarnath shrine, but it was later decided to shift the starting point to Sonprayag. The 16-km trekking route to the shrine starts at Gaurikund. The motorable distance between Sonprayag and Gaurikund is 8 kms.