Sunday, November 2, 2008

Junagadh turns into a tourist hotspot during festive season.

Sibte Husain Bukhari Posted: Nov 02, 2008 at 0239 hrs IST

Junagadh, November 1 : Junagadh has become a hotspot for tourists during the holiday season. In the last five days, thousands of tourists from across the state have visited famous tourist sites here, particularly the Somnath Temple, Gir Forests, Girnar Mountains, holiday camp sites at Chorwad and Madhavpur beaches and the Sakkarbaug Zoo among other places. During this festive season, the Railways and the state transport earned remarkable income and transported lakhs of passengers.

Y P Jani, Deputy Station Superintendent, Junagadh Railway station, said: “Since the last five days, the Railways’ income, on an average, has been rupees three lakh per day. Some 30,000 passengers have travelled by train in the last five days.”

The state transport division also reported a similar increase in passenger numbers. A state transport official from the Junagadh bus station said the state transport (ST) recorded a daily passenger base of one lakh. “The ST earned an income of Rs 6 lakh per day at Junagadh during the last five days,” the official said.

V J Rana, Director, Sakkarbaug Zoo, Junagadh, said: “Over 50,000 tourists visited the zoo from October 28 to November 1. The zoo registered an income of Rs five lakh during this period.”

I A Chauhan, Deputy Conservator of Forest, Sasan Gir, said, “Over 10,000 tourists visited the Dewaliya Park and as many as 630 tourist vehicles were given permission to visit deep into the forest on pre-decided routes.” He said the Forest Department registered an income of Rs 10 lakh during the last five days.

The Somnath Temple, which is the most sacred and popular visiting site here, saw over eight lakh visitors during the last five days.

Vishal Shukla, Public Relations Officer, Somnath Temple, said: “The temple door was kept open from 6.30 am to 9.30 pm. Devotees were seen waiting in long queues during the festive season.”

Shukla said all the guest houses and hotels in the vicinity were packed. “There is absolutely no space. Roads leading to the temple were dotted with people. Shopkeepers, particularly those running food stalls, did brisk business,” he said.

Visitor rush has also been reported at various pilgrimage places in and around the Girnar Mountains and the beaches at Chorwad and Madhavpur.


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