Keonjhar: Kanjipani Ghati in Keonjhar district offers picture-postcard scenery to tourists travelling on NH-49. Natural beauty – misty clouds kissing verdant hills while drifting across the sky and small streams gurgling away over boulders – is now found all over from Kanjipani to Jagamohanpur, and about 8 km along Telkoi road, from Kanjipani to Panasanasa. Any tourist is charmed by such ethereal beauty. It has found a special place in the tourist map of Keonjhar. Particularly during monsoon and winter, the place offers unique views and experience to the lovers of nature.
Locals say the place needs some facilities for tourists. Watch towers are a must for tourists who can thereby enjoy the panoramic natural scenery while hilly streams should be protected with barricades. Natural streams mainly draw tourists, locals observed. The state government is taking some steps for development of eco-tourism in the place.
Most importantly, the NHAI is carrying out expansion of the NH-49 at the hilltop.
“Some measures have been taken to develop the place,“ said tourism officer Ramesh Chandra Nayak.
In winter, the temperature here drops to 0°C while clouds touch the valley during rainy season, enhancing the beauty to utmost delight of the tourists. Nature in this area is a treasure trove of varied flora and fauna along with huge wildlife reserves.
There are several tribal villages in Kanjipani Ghati. Adoring its natural setting are the primitive Juanga and Bhuyan tribals. Along with development of the place, promotion of tribal culture and art will add to the eco-tourism potential of this spot.
There are more than 10 tribal villages in Kanjipani Ghati and local inhabitants are dependent upon forest cover for their livelihood. In the absence of any alternative source of income, tribals are causing damage to green vegetation in this area. On the other hand, shifting cultivation, forest fires, deforestation and widening of roads in the area have destroyed its natural vegetation and waterfalls in some parts.
Development of the place will naturally lead to setting up of road side dhabas, eateries and restaurants for the tourists.
Tourism experts said, construction of rest sheds and watchtowers on Kanjipani Ghati could be good value additions to develop this area as a tourist hub and attract more tourists.
Conscious citizens noted that there is a need for coordination between the district administration and different departments of the state government to sincerely develop Kanjipani Ghati as a tourist hub.
It is suggested that the Kanjipani-Telkoi road and Kanjipani-Jagamohanpur National Highway could be connected with ropeways so that tourists can enjoy the aesthetic beauty of the landscape from atop the mountains, he added.
It is learnt that the construction of long-awaited cottage accommodations for tourists has suffered because of red-tapism, despite the earlier decision taken by the Forest department in this regard.
If this place is turned into a tourist hub, it will immensely contribute to the economy in the mineral-rich district, it is said.