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A Black Month Of June Spells On Rohtang Pass

Tag : trekking, Rohtang Pass

 9th June – Into one of the frightening incidents of climate change, the snow at Rohtang pass has completely melted down. What’s more horrifying is that, the remaining snow has turned into black color. June is the month when the snow stays for around 5 – 10 ft height. But this year for the first time snow has melted so fast. It can be the effect of el nino which has taken a toll worldwide and particularly in the Himalaya’s. But the snow at 13,050ft high mountain pass is not only melting faster than the previous years, it has also turned black again.


Some locals suggest that even after NGT limited the number of vehicles passing through Rohtang pass, driver’s bribe the security guard who then let the vehicle pass through. The high rush of tourists, passing of unlimited vehicles and unregulated tourism activities has been blamed major reasons for such an effect. The National Green Tribunal (NGT) took strong steps to preserve the fragile eco system of Rohtang pass. The NGT has asked the Himachal government to prepare a master plan to regulate all the activities. It has also limited the number of vehicles going to Rohtang pass. But it failed even after imposing strict rules on it.

Rohtang Pass

Local resident Bhag Chand Thakur, who is in 80s, said, "I think it will be for the first time when Rohtang will become snowless in June. Now few vehicles are allowed to reach Rohtang and all tourism activities are banned. Dhabas have been demolished and few tourists reach Rohtang. Even then, the snow is melting fast and remaining snow has turned black. Who is responsible for this now?"


A professor of glacial geomorphology with Jawaharlal Nehru University Dr. Milap Dhand Sharma has conducted a study and has claimed that the black layer on the snow is not harmful carbon. However, the study has said that due to increased traffic, its high carbon emission is polluting he area. It is also affecting the snow and playing the major part in melting snow at Rohtang.


Source - TOI