Rishikesh is one of the cities in India. The city is located in the Dehradun region, precisely in the foothills of the Himalayas in northern India. The city is dubbed the ‘Gate of Garhwal Himalayas’, the mountains that are in the state of Uttarakhand, India. Another nickname for this city is The World Capital of Yoga.Some aspects of the environment are also a concern of this city.
It is common knowledge that Rishikesh is the holiest place for Hindus. Religious leaders and Hindu philosophers have visited this city since ancient times to meditate with the aim of seeking higher knowledge.
In September 2015, the city and Haridwar eventually became “twin national heritage cities” based on the announcement from Tourism Minister Mahesh Sharma. Non-vegetarian food and alcohol are also strictly prohibited there due to the religious significance of this place.
People often refer to this city as “The World Capital of Yoga” is nothing else because there are so many yoga centers that attract tourists. This holy city has been a spiritual center for thousands of years.
Many believe that meditating there can bring them closer to the attainment of Hindu philosophy-moksha, which is likened to swimming in a sacred river that runs through it. The Beatles also highlighted this city when visiting the small town of India in 1968. This visit makes this city famous in the western countries as a destination for learning and spiritual practice.
There are many nicknames given to this yoga city. It is known as “Tapo Bhumi”, meaning it is a place for yoga and meditation of the Gods. The meaning of the name of this city itself is “city of saints” or the city of angels. According to legend, a philosopher named Rishi Raibhya once sat on the banks of the river Ganges and performed severe penance in the form of an extreme yoga practice.
The myth, Lord Vishnu-in Rishikesh’s form-emerged and later rewarded Rishi. The story is believed to be the history of the name where the city originated. For years the angels have been meditating in this peaceful place, under the towering mountains, and beside the flowing river Ganges.
The peace of this city is also recognized by the Prince of Wales who had come to Rishikesh in 2013. Prince of Wales even had time to participate in Ganga meaning, a religious ritual of Hindus. Charles said that he was amazed by his experience sitting on the edge of one of the world’s ancient rivers. According to him, it is the right time for humans to rediscover their connections with nature.
In addition to preserving the sport that is close to nature, some other aspects of the environment that are noticed by this city is the tourism industry. Tourists who visit this city are not just interested in yoga, but also with rafting and traveling activities in this city. Rafting is a popular sport here in the summer. Rafting activities conducted in the river certainly makes the tourists closer to nature.
Visiting many people from all over the world is not impossible to leave traces of environmental damage. The impact can be seen from the amount of garbage in tourist attractions that pollute the beauty of this city. Recently Rishikesh has got the first garbage disposal system.
The system was inaugurated by Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat and Swami Chidanand Saraswati who was President of Parmath Niketan-the Hindu spiritual institution. This system is called The Kill Waste, a solid waste disposal system that is fuel free and uses a simple tool.
The main engine is installed in the ashram to inspire thousands of national and international pilgrims as well as lovers and neighboring countries to share the same solutions in their communities. This machine can decompose dry and wet waste effectively without causing harmful odors and gases. The decomposition results in a neutral ash, neutralized with activated charcoal and can be reused as manure.
With the rapid advance technology, we should be able to use it as well. One of the uses is to reduce the negative impact on the environment. Environmental awareness must be owned by everyone. Do not forget to keep the cleanliness and beauty when you visit Rishikesh.