Demand to resume Winter Line Carnival in Mussoorie gains momentum
Mussoorie, December 19
The demand to resume the Winter Line Carnival initiated by the local communities involved with hospitality business in 2013 from 25th December to 30th December is gaining momentum again in Mussoorie.
The Winter Line Carnival gets its name from the unique natural phenomenon of a false horizon that is visible from Mussoorie during the evening as the sun sets over Dun valley, filling the sky with the shades of red, orange grey and yellow thus creating the mesmerising illusion of colours leaving tourists spellbound during the winter season. Experts believe that it occurs due to the refraction of light that hits the rising dust particles and the smog thus creating a false horizon.
The Winter Line Carnival considered one of the biggest cultural festivals of Uttarakhand was held jointly by the tourism department along with the district administration on annual basis to attract tourists from around the world during the Christmas Holiday season.
However, with the imposition of Covid-19 lockdown, the Winter Line carnival festivities were suspended in 2020 and have not been held since then.
With the tourists trickling back to the town after a gap of two years due to lock down, the local communities involved in the tourism business are demanding resumption of the Winter Line Carnival in Mussoorie.
The Winter Line Carnival began with the objective of attracting tourists who were under the grip of fear following the Kedarnath natural calamity in 2013. Over the years it succeeded in attracting tourists annually thus providing employment to the locals. However, with the start of the Covid 19 pandemic lockdown period, the festivities had to be discontinued in 2020 which have not been resumed yet which is cause of concern for the citizens.
Sandeep Sahni, President of the Uttarakhand Hotel and Restaurant Association said, “There is a rise in tourism activities in the town this year hence the government should re-evaluate its decision of resuming the Winter Line Carnival for the benefit of all stakeholders.” The event had started with a great struggle, and it should continue even if it is organised symbolically this year,” he added.
Mussoorie Hotel Association president Sanjay Agarwal said, “A consensus has emerged among the administration and all the stakeholders to organize the Winter Line Carnival albeit with reduced grandeur.”
The food festival along with curtailed cultural activities will be part of the festival, said Sanjay Agarwal
The hotel management institutions around the region are also in favour of the resumption of the Winter Line Carnival as it provides a platform for their students to learn about tourism-related activities and gain practical experience by interacting with the tourists of different tastes and preferences from around the world who come to enjoy the festival.
SDM Mussoorie Manish Kumar said, “The demand for a carnival with reduced scale is being suggested by the local citizens and the administration will decide after taking all aspects into consideration.”
Chandra Khanduri, a hotelier from Mussoorie said that the tourism industry has suffered a lot during the Covid 19 period, and it is time to attract tourists in the best possible way thus helping the government in garnering much-needed revenue.
Ranbir Singh Dhamija a tourist from Noida who was in Mussoorie along with his family said that a large number of the population has been vaccinated and is observing the Covid 19 guidelines laid down by the government, a festival on a reduced scale would provide psychological relief to all.
However, the spread of the latest Omicron variant of the Covid 19 virus has alarmed the health experts who have advised to apply caution and keep the festivities at a symbolic level to avoid any spread of the pandemic.