To make viewers virtually explore the unexplored destination, create awareness about the hidden destinations in Chhattisgarh, unique culture, tribal heritage and festivals, the Ministry of Tourism’s celebrated Dekho Apna Desh webinar series showcased the “HIDDEN TREASURES OF CHHATTISGARH” on 09.06.2020. Dekho Apna Desh Webinar Series is an effort to showcase India’s rich diversity under Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat programme.
The 30th session of the Dekho Apna Desh webinar series on 09th June,2020 was moderated by Rupinder Brar, Additional Director General , Ministry of Tourism. P. Anbalagan, Secretary (Tourism & Culture), Government of Chhattisgarh, set the background for the session with his introductory remarks and the session was presented by Jaspreet Singh Bhatia, Founder, Icecubes Holidays, Jeet Singh Arya, Founder, Unexplored Bastar and Thommen Jose, Author & Blogger. The three presenters virtualised and highlighted the unexplored destinations and unique cultural and heritage wealth of Chhattisgarh.
Mr. Jaspreet Bhatia set the tone of the session by highlighting some of the key facts of the states and its immense tourism potential. Chhattisgarh, carved out of Madhya Pradesh came into being on 1 November 2000 and is 9th largest state in India . Being Central Eastern state of India, it borders 7 states, 44% of land covered by forest, 34% of tribal population. With 3 National parks, 11 Wildlife sanctuaries, 1 Bio-sphere reserve it is one of India’s greenest state and well connected with rest of the country by air, rail and road network.
Some of the best waterfalls of country are in Chhattisgarh, few of them are Chitrakote, Amritdhara, Pawai, Machli etc., Chhattisgarh is also blessed with three shaktipeeths Champaranya, Rajim and Sheorinarayan. Wrought iron, bell metal and terracotta are famous handicrafts of Chhattisgarh.
Mr. Jeet Singh Arya took the audience to a virtual tour of Bastar. Bastar is one of the unexplored destinations which is in south of Chhattisgarh. Bastar region has spectacular scenic views, roads and hidden waterfalls. Bastar region has more than 15 waterfalls. Kotumsar caves, which are largest series of caves after Meghalaya are in Chhattisgarh. Bastar Dussehra world’s longest festival which is celebrated for 75 days has a different story related to goddess Dhanteswari. Gond’s, Madiya, Muriaya’s are some of the tribes making Bastar as the land of indigenous tribes. Handicrafts history dates back to Harappan civilization the technique used is lost wax technique. Third largest lord Ganesha statue in the world which made of a single sand stone. Cave paintings with 12000 years of history are in Bastar region.
Mr. Thommen Jose presented the following lesser known places of tourist interest and experiences that Chhattisgargh offers
• Karkabhat – Megalithic burial site generally ignored by tourists. Studies conducted in the area have identified 3 types of menhirs- Conical, pointed obliquely and bifurcated like a fish tail.
• Dipadih – Temple complex dating back to the 7th Century is probably the best kept archaeological secret of Chhattisgarh. Excavated stone pillars have been erected along the path next to the entrance on which are exhibited the mythological creatures.
• Ghotul – It is both an ancient tribal system of education as well as the campus with its own system of hierarchs.
• Sonabai- Famous bas relief ornamentation works of Chhattisgarh got its roots when Sonabai made little toys for her son Daroga Ram to lull him to sleep.
• Tribal games – Cock fighting
Concluding the webinar session Rupinder Brar informed about Ministry of Tourism releasing the Operational Recommendations for the various hospitality & travel trade sectors namely hotels, Restaurants, B&B , Homestay / farmstay and Tourism Service Provider. These are the recommended Safety and Hygiene Guidelines for Tourism Sector to be followed post lockdown travel. Details available at Ministry of Tourism website tourism.gov.in
The National e-Governance Division (NeGD) created by the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY) has been playing a pivotal role in supporting the Ministry in conducting of the Dekho Apna Desh Webinars by providing technical assistance directly with a professional team thereby ensuring effective citizen engagement and communication with all stakeholders using the digital experience platform.
The sessions of webinars are now available on the https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbzIbBmMvtvH7d6Zo_ZEHDA/featured and also on all social media handles of Ministry of Tourism, Government of India.
The next episode of the webinar scheduled on, 11th June 2020 at 11.00 am, is title Himachal – Around the Next Bend. Registrations open at https://bit.ly/HimachalDAD