Dehradun, April 23
Haldwari village, which is also famous for a natural sulphur spring, could be converted into a tourist destination. It is about 40 km from Dehradun.
The local residents are hopeful that with the concept of rural tourism gaining popularity worldwide, the village having sulphur-rich water spring could be developed into a tourist spot. It will play a key role in the development of this remote village.
Haldwari is accessible by a 2.5 km trek from Ragad village, the last road head. It is 18 kilometre from Maldevta.
The village is known for the sulphur spring, where the local people come to take bath, especially during weekends.
"People from nearby villages and tourists from Dehradun take bath in the sulphur spring in our village. It is believed that sulphur bath is beneficial in a number of aliments, including skin diseases," said Dinesh Singh, a local resident.
In the past, Haldwari was one of the hot spots for mining of limestone. Truck used to move up to the village, but the ban on quarrying in the Doon valley in the late 80s gave a major setback to the road connectivity.
"The companies involved in mining used to maintain the road. Even after the ban of quarrying, the roads were in good shape but after heavy rainfall in 2007, many bridges were washed away. Since 2007, we are struggling and have approached the state government many times for connecting the village with all-weather road. But, nobody is paying any heed to our request," complained Balwant Panwar.
The temporary road connecting Ragad is bumpy and only jeeps and cars move on the Kucha road. At present, two jeeps ferry passengers from Raipur to Ragad and vice versa.
Nature lover Sudhanshu Negi, who is a regular visitor to Ragad, said, "The August 23, 2011 cloudburst in Karligad village had an adverse affect on the sulphur springs in Sahastradhara (Dehradun). Now the sulphur water level in Sahastradhara is low. Compared to it, the flow of sulphur water is very high at Haldwari. It is located near Dehradun and can be developed into a picnic spot."
The free-flowing Song river is another attraction in the village. The houses are located in isolated places and Haldwari is home to 40 families. Most of the villages located in and around Haldwari remain cut off from rest of the world in monsoon due to washing away of the road.