Assam Govt forms Separate Committee for Picnic Management - G Plus

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Assam Govt forms Separate Committee for Picnic Management

G Plus News | November 30, 2019 11:16 hrs

The government of Assam has issued a notification for a decentralized and self-sustaining mode of picnic management regulations by means of constituting the District Picnic Monitoring and Supervisory Committee (DPMSC). 

With picnicking season just around the corner, the government of Assam has directed the deputy commissioners of all districts to act as chairmen of the DPMSC. 

As per the notification, the DPMSC shall have members from the departments of Home, Forest, Health, Finance, Tourism, PWD along with the Urban Local Bodies, and Disaster Management Authorities. 

“The DPMSC shall notify the picnic spots within the district keeping in view the aspects of environmental safety, sustainable tourism, minimum interruption in the residential areas, schools, hospitals and any means of transport along with public safety,” states the notification.

The picnic parties shall have to abide by the rules and regulations issued by the DPMSC and disobedience of the same shall lead to penalty. 

Some of the most commonly visited picnic spots in Guwahati are the Assam State Zoo, Srimanta Sankaradeva Kalakshetra and Regional Science Centre.

Every year during the picnic season, these spots see a massive surge in the number of visitors which is highest on January 1.

The Kamrup (M) district administration issues separate guidelines for picnickers urging them to cooperate with the authorities and not pollute the picnic spots by littering or throwing garbage. 

Picnic spots lack proper maintenance, feel Guwahatians

Most of the tourist attractions in Guwahati are ill-equipped in terms of infrastructural facilities and lack proper maintenance.

"I have been living in Guwahati since my childhood and have visited quite a few of the tourist spots. However, I feel that with the constant rise in the number of tourists, the places are not being maintained appropriately,” said Sanjay Dey, a student and resident of Guwahati.
One of the prevailing problems in picnic spots of Guwahati is lack of toilets or presence of ill-maintained, stinking toilets that mar the overall aesthetics of the place.

Bearing the brunt of ill-equipped toilets, women often have to hold it for a long time as they wait in queues. Further, in most places, there's lack of sit-down toilets that makes it impossible for the differently-abled to use them.

While tourists opine that the authorities are responsible for such problems, the authorities instead put the blame on the increasing number of tourists and say that they need to have a better sense of hygiene and cleanliness.
Keeping this in mind, the Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) recently passed an order saying that it will penalize people if they are found littering the streets. This is possible as per Section 299 of the Guwahati Municipal Act 1971.

The GMC order states that “no person shall throw or place any rubbish, offensive matter or sewage on any street or in any place that is not earmarked for the purpose”.
Some picnic spots also suffer from the lack of lights, and ill-maintenance of roads leading to them.

One example of the same is the Hatisila picnic spot which is visited by thousands of picnickers every year. Last year, hundreds of picnickers were left stranded at Hatisila picnic spot located on the outskirts of Guwahati as the rescue operation was stopped due to improper road and poor light.

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