Rudprayag, March 21
The hawk-eye monitoring by the central government under the PMO office on the restoration and development works at Kedarnath has led to the state government officials leaving no stone unturned to ensure a hassle free Yatra season this year. With only 40 days left, the preparations are being reviewed to such minutest details to an extent that the warm drinking water arrangements are being ensured for the mules and horses plying on the Kedarnath trek route this season.
Commissioner Garhwal Dilip Javalkar during a review meeting held at Rudra Complex in Rudprayag on Tuesday directed the officials to make warm drinking water arrangements for the Mules this Yatra season. The officials from UREDA have been assigned the task to ensure that the Mule gets its share of warm drinking water and remain healthy during the yatra season.
The animals especially who are important link in transporting people especially elderly to the main shrine were at the receiving end and a forgotten lot during the 2013-natural calamity that struck Kedarnath. Many mules died of starvation and lack of drinking water. Consequently, this year every step is being taken to see that no animal dies due to such negligence. It is believed that more than 3000 Mules were left stranded at Kedarnath, Govindghat and Hemkund Sahib back then. The priority is being given to ensure a continuous supply of fodder and warm drinking water to the beast of burden during the high-level government meetings being held here.
Animal lovers believe that most of the mules drink less water when its cold. Water is an important item for mules and horses to remain healthy. These animals need lot of water to wash the indigested food through their intestinal tract and if they do not drink then it could lead to bad intestinal impaction and colic tract. Mules and Horses with any kind of dental problem, sensitive teeth, mouth, gums, sore tooth might refuse to drink cold water because it’s painful. So warm water is given to the animals by its owners without making them suspicious of any change otherwise they will not drink the water.
“To keep these healthy and strong for the arduous trek from Sonprayag to Kedarnath we sometimes feed the mules and horses with salt so that they become thirsty and drink water to remain healthy said Shiv Singh a mule owner at Kedarnath. It is indeed commendable that the arrangements are being made by the government for warm drinking water for the animals this yatra season, he added. The wellbeing of the Mules and horses is important for the owners as they are lifeline of the Kedarnath Yatra and provide added revenue to the owners every yatra season.
Animals lover Inderjeet Singh Bedi who is into breeding horses from Mussoorie has commended the government of thinking about the Mules deployed in Kedarnath. He said that during winters the leaves from Euclyptus tree mixed with warm water also helps in keeping away of cough and cold among the mules. The health of these mules deployed in Kedarnath is very important as any animal in pain might prove dangerous to the pilgrim riding on it. He also said that veterinary doctors should be posted at every standpoint to avoid spread of any disease that is detrimental to the health of the animals.