Shimla, once the summer capital of the erstwhile British Raj in India, is a fantasy place for maximum people leaving in the hot climate. It is one of the favourite honeymoon and education destinations. No wonder this hill station has seen numerous changes over decades.
Iâ€™ll discuss some changes from our daily lives.
Iâ€™ll talk about an incidence from my personal life to illustrate. About twenty years ago when we were in school, our Uncle from Delhi used to visit us every year in winters. The time spent with him appears to be a dream for me. Heavy snowfall in December, we living on water melted from snow and no electricity. Like hunting trips, we all got together to collect snow from clean place like roofs for drinking. A full snow bucket when melted couldnâ€™t even provide half a bucket of water. We played in snow and made huge snowmanâ€¦ But today he refuses to come to Shimla because there is neither such heavy snowfall nor that pure environment.
He says. â€œThere is no much difference in Shimla and Delhi now. Snowfall toh hota nahi aakar kya karna!â€ (Its useless to come there as it does not snow in Shimla.)
Snowfall was not the only reason for his denial, it was the traffic jams and litter which made the â€œQueen of Hillsâ€ unpleasant place to relax.
The cause of these is the increasing population of Shimla. According to the 2001 census the population of this hill station has increased over 700,000 from 770 in 1901. Lack of proper knowledge of family planning is not only the reason behind growing population but the rapid migration to the capital city of Himachal Pradesh for better opportunities is also one of main the cause.
Another concerning issue is the littering around by the people which makes our Queen of Hills unattractive and dirty. People donâ€™t wish to spend some amount of their earning to hire a sweeper (appointed by the state government) to dispose their daily household dregs. Their vanished â€˜civic senseâ€™ and â€˜self-centerednessâ€™ is a big subject of worry, which cannot be removed by any law.
The only way seems to be the improved moral values and sense of responsibility towards the nature and other fellow beings.
Today, with thanks to easy-made-installment-schemes offered by various banks, buying a vehicle is a dream-come-true for everyone. Where one car is sufficient for a family, people go in for four different budget vehicles to maintain their flamboyant status symbol. Thus, making their genuine contribution to traffic jams and air/sound pollution.
Itâ€™s the call of the hour that each and every citizen takes their responsibility towards their city seriously, leaving this very causal approachâ€¦ â€œchalta hai!â€