Sans safety, these nature’s marvels turn death traps for ardent tourists

Source: DHNS | By Mohammed Ismail | Published on 13th June 2018, 10:50 AM | Coastal News |

Siddapura: Uttara Kannada district is blessed with nature’s bounty. Among them are Tens of Waterfall that are formed by the advent of small rivulets, streams and rivers, that attract hundreds of tourists from across the State and country.

With monsoon gaining full strength in the region, perennial waterfalls have regained their youthful vigour and started attracting tourists from far off lands.

Siddapura taluk has few breathtaking waterfalls and reaching them is no less a Herculean task. The Trek to these waterfalls are treacherous and can invite danger if tourists let their guard down even for a second. Yet, the district administration or tourism department officials have not installed any warning signs en-route these falls.

There have been several incidents in the past, when tourists have lost their lives while enjoying the falls.

Burdejog, Unchalli falls and world renowned Jog falls, on the border of the taluk, attract more tourists in the district than any others. One has to be extra careful while trekking to these places.

There have been several incidents of tourists’ deaths at these waterfalls while trying to be extra adventurous. Majority of tourists do not know the depth of the falls and drown while swimming at the waterfall pool. Deaths have occurred even when tourists try to walk precariously on the slippery boulders in a bid to watch the waterfall from the edge of it.

While Jog falls has better connectivity, other two waterfalls - Burdejog, Unchalli falls - in the taluk are not blessed with such facility. One has to walk at least four to six km inside the forest to reach the waterfall. Only recently has the government installed a watch tower and steps for Unchalli falls.

In the last three years five people have lost their lives at Burdejog.

One youth from Shivamogga district was washed away in the waterfall this year, after which residents and members of Kyadagi Gram Panchayat demanded the police department to lay fence around the waterfall as a protective measure.

“Majority of people who have died at Burdejog are between 18 and 20 years. Their adventurous attitude results in their deaths. So we have demanded the police department to construct a protective fence around the fall,” said Kyadagi Gram Panchayat President S R Naik.

Guest house

Tourism department has spent lot of funds on development of the waterfalls. Steps have also been constructed till the waterfall pool.

Guest house has also been built, but they have not taken measures to secure the lives of tourists who visit them.

The residents have urged the government to install warning sign boards near the waterfalls.

A protective mesh should also be installed around the falls, they said.

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