The Valley of Flowers In the Gharwal Region of the Himalayas is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that has recorded more than 20,000 visitors in the past 5 months breaking all its previous records.
The highest footfall achieved before this year was 17,424 which was in the year 2019 thus concerning experts in the region.
Experts believe that the increasing number of footfalls is not a matter of celebration, but a matter of concern as this harms the fragile nature of the environment and thus they are asking the government to cap the number of tourists to the world heritage location.
Reportedly, locals, botanists, and social activists have also expressed the need to regulate tourism and tourism-related activities to ensure that the fragile ecosystem of the valley is protected from excess anthropogenic pressure.
The rising number of tourists is something to be worried about, especially when the valley witnessed the early melting of the Tipra glacier this year at March-end due to excess heat in the Garhwal Himalayas and almost a fortnight-early blooming of flowers.
Speaking about this, Ecologist and Alpine expert said “There is something wrong in this whole ‘economy boom via tourism’ concept. We need research on its vulnerability to tourist footfall’
“We need to conduct research on various aspects of the valley like its flora and fauna and their vulnerability to the huge tourist footfall and climate change. We also need to analyse the sensitivity of the people towards that area and only then permit them entry.” Continued the expert where he expressed concern to the leading daily newspaper.