Shimla’s history to be showcased for tourists: CM

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Shimla, Aug 29 (IANS) The Himachal government will showcase the history of Shimla over the years as the once tiny village metamorphosed to become the summer capital of the British Raj in India, Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur told the Assembly on Wednesday.

The government will showcase Shimla’s history spanning many decades through a laser light-and-sound show for the benefit of tourists, said Thakur, who also holds the tourism portfolio.

Known as the ‘Queen of Hills’, Shimla was the summer capital of the British rulers between 1864 and 1939.

“A similar show at the Cellular Jail (at Port Blair) in the Andaman and Nicobar islands, which I once witnessed, makes huge impact on the audience and is a tourist attraction. On similar lines, we will showcase Shimla’s history and culture through the light-and-sound show,” Thakur said while replying to a debate on the state’s tourism policy.

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“Shimla’s history goes beyond The Mall. We propose to introduce the show so that people who visit Shimla also know its history.”

Mahatma Gandhi visited Shimla several times in the days leading to the country’s independence in 1947. On some occasions, freedom fighters like Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, Jawaharlal Nehru, Madan Mohan Malaviya and Lala Lajpat Rai accompanied him.

Thakur said that poor connectivity was a stumbling block in the promotion of tourism in Himachal.

The Chief Minister said that tourists visiting the hill state complained about poor roads and road connectivity. “I am sure new highways and four-laned roads in Himachal will help solve this problem from tourism point of view,” he said.

He said that since problems were faced in the expansion of state’s three airports at Shimla, Kangra and Kullu, the Himachal government had taken up with the Centre the issue of developing a bigger airport at a suitable place.

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–IANS

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