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History of Joshimath and Why Joshimath is sinking ?

History of Joshimath

Joshimath is a town located in the Indian state of Uttarakhand. It is situated in the Chamoli district and is an important religious and cultural center. The history of Joshimath can be traced back to the 8th century when the great Indian philosopher and teacher, Adi Shankaracharya, established one of the four cardinal institutions, called mathas, in the town. The matha, known as the Joshimath-Badrinath matha, is one of the most important centers of learning and pilgrimage in the region.

In the medieval period, Joshimath was an important center of the Katyuri dynasty, which ruled over the region in the 9th and 10th centuries. The town was also a major center of the Chand dynasty, which ruled from the 14th to the 17th century.

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During the British colonial period, Joshimath was a popular destination for British officials and tourists visiting the region. The town played an important role in the development of tourism in the area, and many British-era hotels and guesthouses can still be found in the town today.

 

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In the modern era, Joshimath continues to be an important pilgrimage center for Hindus, especially for the followers of the Nath tradition. The town also serves as a base for trekkers and mountaineers heading to the nearby peaks of the Himalayas.

Famous Places in Joshimath

list of some famous places in Joshimath:

  1. Adi Shankaracharya Matha: This matha, also known as the Joshimath-Badrinath Matha, was established by the famous Indian philosopher and teacher, Adi Shankaracharya, in the 8th century. It is one of the four cardinal institutions established by him and is an important center of learning and pilgrimage for Hindus.
  2. Narsingh Temple: This temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu in his incarnation as Narsingh (half-man, half-lion). It is said to have been established by the Pandavas during their exile. The temple is a major pilgrimage site and is visited by thousands of devotees every year.
  3. Kalpavriksha: This is a sacred tree located near the Narsingh Temple. It is believed that the tree has the power to fulfill the wishes of those who pray to it.
  4. Tapovan: This is a picturesque meadow located near Joshimath. It is a popular spot for trekkers and hikers, offering beautiful views of the surrounding mountains.
  5. Auli: This is a ski resort located near Joshimath. It is famous for its scenic beauty and is a popular destination for skiing and winter sports.
  6. Vyas Cave: This is a small cave located near Joshimath. It is believed to be the place where the great Indian sage, Vyas, wrote the Mahabharata.

These are some of the famous places in Joshimath. The town is surrounded by majestic Himalayas, and many trekkers and mountaineers come here to enjoy the natural beauty of the place and explore the challenging trekking routes.

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How to reach Joshimath

The route to reach Joshimath from major cities in India will vary depending on the starting point. Below are a few examples of routes from some major cities:

  1. From Delhi:

  • Take the NH44 towards Roorkee
  • Continue on NH44 and take the exit towards Haridwar
  • Take the NH7 towards Dehradun
  • Continue on NH7 and take the exit towards Rishikesh
  • Take the NH34 towards Devprayag
  • Continue on NH34 and take the exit towards Joshimath
  1. From Dehradun:

  • Take the NH7 towards Rishikesh
  • Continue on NH7 and take the exit towards Devprayag
  • Take the NH34 towards Joshimath
  1. From Haridwar:

  • Take the NH7 towards Dehradun
  • Continue on NH7 and take the exit towards Rishikesh
  • Take the NH34 towards Devprayag
  • Continue on NH34 and take the exit towards Joshimath

Note: The exact route may vary depending on traffic and road conditions. It’s always recommended to check the map or take a GPS device for the accurate route.

Joshimath is well connected by road and you can reach there by bus or car. However, the nearest airport Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun is about 290 km away and the nearest railway station is Rishikesh railway station which is about 250 km away from Joshimath.

Why Joshimath is sinking

The sinking of Joshimath is primarily due to heavy deforestation and soil erosion caused by human activities such as illegal logging and mining. The removal of trees and vegetation from the surrounding hills has resulted in the loss of the natural barrier that protects the town from landslides and soil erosion. This causes the soil to lose its stability and makes the town more vulnerable to sinking.

The main cause for the sinking of Joshimath –

  1. Environmental degradation: Heavy deforestation and soil erosion caused by human activities such as illegal logging and mining have led to environmental degradation in the region. This has resulted in the loss of vegetation and the weakening of the soil, making the town more vulnerable to landslides and soil erosion.
  2. Climate change: The increased melting of glaciers in the region due to climate change has led to the formation of new lakes and rivers, which can cause landslides and erosion, further exacerbating the problem of sinking.
  3. Overcrowding and urbanization: The increase of population and urbanization in the town have led to the rise of construction activities and the over-exploitation of natural resources. This can lead to the weakening of the soil and the sinking of the town.

Overall, the sinking of Joshimath is a complex issue that is caused by a combination of human activities, climate change, and natural phenomena. To address this problem, it is essential to take measures to protect the environment and to implement sustainable development practices in the region.

 

RochakGuy

Active tech blogger. contributed a number of great and informative articles to the internet.

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