Thursday, June 20, 2013

One lakh victims of pilgrimage tourism

What is happening in Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh, especially along the Badrinath and Kedarnath temple routes, where most of the hundreds of thousands of pilgrims got trapped are feared killed or injured, points towards the role of pilgrimage tourism promoted by  the tourism and real estate mafia with the active co-operation of the ruling establishment and religious leaders in the destruction of ecology on a vast scale. It led to even natural calamities turning in to human catastrophes causing enormous loss of life and immense destruction of property. As every religion is becoming increasingly fundamentalist and evangelical, as a part of creating religious frenzy among the masses pilgrimage is promoted immensely. It is happening in every country. In India with the growth of Hindutua forces there is a competition among religious and sub-religious groups for promoting centres of pilgrimage. In their frenzy new centres of pilgrimage are created. What has happened to the traditional pilgrimage centres where people used to go on foot without causing any environmental destruction gave way to millions going using most modern vehicles and staying in posh resorts. For this huge infra structural development was taken up by the real estate mafia with corporate and state help. The religious and sub-religious groups encouraged this. VHP like organizations collected millions by recruiting and deploying volunteers for this. The whole pilgrimage is turned in to another industry called pilgrimage tourism. So along with the real estate-contractor mafia and the ruling establishment, the RSS Parivar responsible for turning the pilgrimage centres in Uttarakhand and other Himalayan shrines death traps for millions of innocent people who are turned in to blind devotees.

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