In November 2020, the Union Minister of State for Development of North Eastern Region inaugurated the Mansar Lake Development Plan in Jammu. In this article, you can read all about the Mansar Lake Project, its significance and also a few important facts about the Mansar Lake for UPSC and other government exams.
Mansar Lake Development Plan
The Project envisages rejuvenating and renovating the Mansar Lake and surrounding areas along the lines of the Ganga Rejuvenation Plan.
- The objective is to attract 20 Lakh tourist visitors annually to the region.
- Along with Mansar Lake, Devika Lake is also envisaged to be rejuvenated and developed.
- Both the projects would cost the exchequer Rs. 200 crores.
- The project is expected to generate revenue of Rs. 800 crores per annum.
- It is also expected to create employment of about 1.15 crore man days.
The Government of India has been engaging in a number of development projects in Jammu & Kashmir, some of which are, Shahpur Kandi Irrigation Project, the revival of the Ujh Multipurpose Project, the Katra-Delhi expressway corridor, and an airport at Kishtwar under the UDAN scheme.
Tourism constitutes 7% of the GDP of Jammu & Kashmir and it is a major source of revenue.
Mansar Lake Significance
Mansar Lake is located at about 37 km from Jammu.
- It is a natural freshwater lake and is surrounded by forest-covered hills.
- The Surinsar – Mansar Lakes are considered a Ramsar Site.
- The Surinsar Lake is situated 9 km from Mansar Lake and they are considered twin lakes. In the midst of both lakes is located the Surinsar Mansar Wildlife Sanctuary.
- The Sanctuary is home to several species of animals including the spotted deer, nilgai and birds such as ducks and cranes.
- The Mansar Lake has abundant flora and fauna, especially huge turtles.
- The lake houses 15 species of waterfowl, 207 species of algae and 7 fish varieties.
- Fishing is a major activity there.
- The lake is significant not only as a tourist site but also as a religious place.
- The lake offers boating facilities for tourists and is a major tourist destination because of its scenic beauty.
- The lake shares the legend of the religiously significant Lake Manasarovar in Tibet.
- Along the lake, there are several temples, including the ancient temples dedicated to Narasimha and Umapati Mahadev.
- There is also a shrine dedicated to the serpent god Sheshnag.
- Apart from taking a holy dip on auspicious occasions, many Hindu communities also perform their child’s mundan ceremony here.