Gorkhatimes

A Gorkha weblog which intends to keeps you updated about everything and bring together all Gorkhali community

Teesta rises, rafts on bank – Rain lashes hills and plains, weatherman forecasts showers for two more days

Posted by Ramesh Khati on October 8, 2009

Kalimpong, Oct. 7: Torrential rain in the past 24 hours couldn’t have come at a worse time for the river rafting units at Melli and Teesta Bazaar, which were hoping for a brisk business during the tourism season.
As the rain swelled the Teesta, the rafting in the river was cancelled today. The adventure sport was resumed only on September 25 after a hiatus of more than three months.
On June 3, the DGHC administration had imposed a ban on the rafting after a tourist from Mumbai had drowned in a raft capsize. Subsequently, the ban was withdrawn, but with the arrival of the monsoon, the rafting could not be resumed till September 25.
Sukbir Lama, vice-president of the Teesta-Rangit Raft Owners’ Association, said the administration allowed the rafting again after raft owners had promised to take additional safety measures.
As part of the new safety measures, the units are sailing two rafts at a time: one with passengers on board and the other with two helpers and a guide. “The raft carrying passengers also has two helpers and a guide. Besides the three, eight passengers are accommodated on one raft,” said Lama.
“Today, we on our own decided against rafting because of the rise in the water level of the river. We don’t want to take any risk and want to make the rafting as safe as possible,” said Lama.
Rafting starts at Labarbote, near Melli, and culminates at two different points. While the short trip of about 7km stops at Ravi Jhora, the long ride ends at Baluakhani, 29 Mile, further 3km downstream. “We charge Rs 350 per head for the short journey and Rs 450 for the 10km long rafting,” said Lama.
The association vice-president said the business this season was down by 30 per cent probably because the incident of the drowning was still fresh in the minds of the tourists.
“Now with the heavens opening up in renewed vengeance, our earnings will take a further dip,” said Lama. He was, however, optimistic that if there was no further rain, the water level would come down in the next couple of days and the rafting could resume.
Melli and Teesta have about 20 units with 45 to 50 rafts. They provide direct employment to about 150 people.

A file picture of tourists rafting down the Teesta

A file picture of tourists rafting down the Teesta

Kalimpong, Oct. 7(The Telegraph): Torrential rain in the past 24 hours couldn’t have come at a worse time for the river rafting units at Melli and Teesta Bazaar, which were hoping for a brisk business during the tourism season.

As the rain swelled the Teesta, the rafting in the river was cancelled today. The adventure sport was resumed only on September 25 after a hiatus of more than three months.

On June 3, the DGHC administration had imposed a ban on the rafting after a tourist from Mumbai had drowned in a raft capsize. Subsequently, the ban was withdrawn, but with the arrival of the monsoon, the rafting could not be resumed till September 25.

Sukbir Lama, vice-president of the Teesta-Rangit Raft Owners’ Association, said the administration allowed the rafting again after raft owners had promised to take additional safety measures.

As part of the new safety measures, the units are sailing two rafts at a time: one with passengers on board and the other with two helpers and a guide. “The raft carrying passengers also has two helpers and a guide. Besides the three, eight passengers are accommodated on one raft,” said Lama.

“Today, we on our own decided against rafting because of the rise in the water level of the river. We don’t want to take any risk and want to make the rafting as safe as possible,” said Lama.

Rafting starts at Labarbote, near Melli, and culminates at two different points. While the short trip of about 7km stops at Ravi Jhora, the long ride ends at Baluakhani, 29 Mile, further 3km downstream. “We charge Rs 350 per head for the short journey and Rs 450 for the 10km long rafting,” said Lama.

The association vice-president said the business this season was down by 30 per cent probably because the incident of the drowning was still fresh in the minds of the tourists.

“Now with the heavens opening up in renewed vengeance, our earnings will take a further dip,” said Lama. He was, however, optimistic that if there was no further rain, the water level would come down in the next couple of days and the rafting could resume.

Melli and Teesta have about 20 units with 45 to 50 rafts. They provide direct employment to about 150 people.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: