Trial landing of chopper on the helipad constructed at the scenic Dzükou valley was successful. Sources said the chopper landed twice on the helipad on Monday. The helipad is set on a hilltop about some 20-minute walking distance above the Dzükou valley.
The project was initiated through the chief minister’s office and implemented by the department of tourism, government of Nagaland. It is a part of the state government’s initiative to promote tourism in the state.
Commissioner and secretary for tourism, art and culture, K. K. Sema said the helipad was basically constructed for tourism purposes and to ensure that facilities were provided to the aged, people with physical challenges or tourists on short visits. He said the chopper service to Dzükou valley would not be on daily service as it would disrupt the peace of the valley but added it would be used only as and when required.
However, a section of the public feels otherwise. Besides, obvious reasons that the construction had cost destruction to ecology and that trekking to the valley would be less adventurous, they were of the view that the construction was “destruction of God’s perfect natural architect.” They felt tourism should not be promoted at the cost of destruction of a tourist spot.
A group called “Naga Global Campaign to Save Dzükou Valley” is already in existence on ‘Facebook’, a popular social networking site. The group has a total of 1,463 members, agreeing to “campaign to save the pristine Dzukou Valley from ‘development’ ruin.” One of the members said that the developments needed in the state were “better roads, drainage systems, road side pit stop restrooms.”
Another member felt, “There is no alternative replacement for the ground that has been lost. The extinction is permanent, consequential as well as irreparable.” One member likened the construction of the Helipad at Dzükou valley to hammering “the last nail on the coffin to whatever little adventure tourism is left in Nagaland.”
Creator of the group “Naga Global Campaign to Save Dzükou Valley” D. Nakhro commented that the group was basically formed to create awareness, pull in people to take up the environmental issue in a more organized manner. She however admitted that nothing concrete could come up though some environmental groups tried to take some initiatives. She said that the valley was already littered with garbage and dirt and added that an easy and direct route to the place would turn the valley from bad to worse. Although the helipad has been constructed, Nakhro said the concerned members could still stand up, create awareness and educate the people on protecting the environment. NPN