News about Hampi

#1 Dec 18th, 2011, 12:05
Join Date:
Sep 2006
Location:
PORTSMOUTH U.K.
Posts:
1,525
  • CliveG is offline
#1
Last week we visited Hampi and spent some of our time visiting the famous palace and temple ruins. On our last day the people who live in Hampi were in the main upset by a ruling that is going to bring about a huge change to the inhabitants. The High Court, following a petition presented by the Guardians of the famous Hindu Temple, has ruled the following:
1) All buildings should be lowered to one storey high. This will include hotels, guest houses and many restaurants.
2) A piece of land 4 km away from the temple is to be given to the people who are forced to move out of their homes.
3) Water, electricity and sewage infrastructure must be in place within 30 days of the ruling.
4) 30 days after the infrastructure is supposedly in place those town folk affected by the ruling will be asked (forced) to move out to the land they have been given even though there will be no homes built.
Why is this happening? Well the Hindu priests believe there are too many tourists in Hampi. It is these Hindu priests who will in the main affect the livelihood of their Hindu congregation. They are also banning tourists from entering the temple and yet last week they were happy to charge Rs2 to anybody who wanted to go inside the Sanctum Sanctorum.
If this all goes ahead as the inhabitants expect then communities will be broken up. I sat outside the guest house we were staying in and watched children, parents, grandparents and neighbours all helping each other and interacting as a small but close community.
The new land offered to the town folk is largely grass and rocks with not a tree in sight. It is not ideal but apart from leaving the area all together the people have no choice. It is also impossible to believe that the infrastructure can be put in place within 30 days. As there will be few, if any guest houses and restaurants available in the near future tourists may decide not to visit Hampi. This could put the funding for the restoration and upkeep of the World Heritage Sites at risk.
Of course being India it might take years for the ruling to be applied but the residents I spoke to are very pessimistic that it is a battle they cannot win. I felt their pain as resident upon resident told me they have no future and that Hampi will become a ghost town with a central temple. It is all very sad for the residents and a blow for all Hindus who live there that their religious leaders appear to show little compassion towards their followers.
#2 Dec 18th, 2011, 16:59
Join Date:
Apr 2011
Location:
Netherlands
Posts:
1,957
  • Klompen is offline
#2
Very sad but knowing a little about these things they were probably knowingly constructing illegal structures, facilitated by bent officials.
A very sad scenario I see repeated all over India. But it's a risk they take voluntarily. Then something changes in local government and they find themselves facing eviction or demolition. Said bent officials walk away scot free of course
Even when I was there businesses were squatting ancient buildings, that is a untenable anywhere.
I read somewhere that UNESCO who lists Hampi as a world heritage site were concerned about this too..

I do feel sorry for the people who will undoubtably lose livlihoods but they would have known this would happen one day.
#3 Dec 18th, 2011, 17:44
Join Date:
Sep 2008
Location:
Southampton, UK
Posts:
2,717
  • OceanTragic is offline
#3
Very sad but they've known this was coming since July when parts of the bazaar area were knocked down. Doesn't make it right though.

From what I've read the main reason for all of this seems to be because there's been some drug taking/selling going on and Unesco got upset and threatened to take away the heritage status.

I would wonder whether the temple lot are just upset that they've probably got the least fascinating attraction in/around Hampi.

Anyone know where this 4km away area is? Either way, it's closer (I guess) to either the Mango Tree, Vittala Temple or the royal area, so perhaps in the end it will be no great loss.

Of course, I feel for the people that are getting affected by any of this.
India blogs: monsoon meandering (2011) and big cats & holy ghats (2009)
Type 1 diabetes blog: circles of blue.
#4 Dec 18th, 2011, 17:54
Join Date:
Jan 2005
Location:
yörp
Posts:
21,997
  • machadinha is offline
#4
Quote:
Originally Posted by OceanTragic View Post From what I've read the main reason for all of this seems to be because there's been some drug taking/selling going on and Unesco got upset and threatened to take away the heritage status.
Yes, but I've also mostly read this being alleged here. (Not that I've tried to follow it anywhere else.)

I don't know too much about UNESCO's dealings, then again I'm sure they would hold designated sites to uphold certain standards, on the other hand I'd also expect them to be open to local sensitivities.

It would of course be very easy for sources to cite them as the cause. Whereas it might as well be more something like local or national authorities *thinking* they should act in a certain way (or finding that convenient, even) to meet certain perceived standards.

The above report interestingly points more to the local temple keepers, if that is true. Not a word about UNESCO.
#5 Dec 18th, 2011, 18:05
Join Date:
Apr 2011
Location:
Netherlands
Posts:
1,957
  • Klompen is offline
#5
The fact remains that people were basically squatting, so there are two sides to the coin and if I remember rightly Hotels were never meant to be higher than one story near the market. This a heritage site remember you wouldn't be allowed to squat a heritage site anywhere in the world.

A close friend got himself into trouble this way too, by building a hotel on what he knew was agricultural land, he just bribed the officials to look the other way, worked fine until the local council changed and they rightfully demanded he knock down the hotel as the land was designated agricultural land.

Paharganj, Goa, Jaiselmer....the list goes on. It's the disorganised nature of India and corruption that leads to these scenarios but there are two parties in corruption.
And illegal structure is a illegal structure. Of course people are aggrieved but I bet they knew they were on shakey legal ground.
#6 Dec 19th, 2011, 14:35
Join Date:
Sep 2006
Location:
PORTSMOUTH U.K.
Posts:
1,525
  • CliveG is offline
#6
Around the Heritage sites there were very few businesses operating last week.
As for drugs most of the guest houses and restaurants had signs stating 'no drug takers'. In fact it is one of the few places where I have not been offered drugs in India (must be the way I look!). Yes they did know this was likely to happen since July but it is the way it is likely to be carried out that concerns me - no chance of having the infrastructure let alone housing being in place in the time scale defined by the court. It is only now that the locals know where they can build so they had no opportunity to plan ahead.
#7 Dec 20th, 2011, 02:21
Join Date:
Sep 2008
Location:
Southampton, UK
Posts:
2,717
  • OceanTragic is offline
#7
Agree with you Clive, it's hard to believe the way it is happening when you come from elsewhere. Very sad indeed.

Did you stay in Hampi then or elsewhere?


(P.S. Pompey 1 - Saints 1 yesterday, and not a single arrest for fighting!)
#8 Dec 20th, 2011, 09:06
Join Date:
Sep 2006
Location:
PORTSMOUTH U.K.
Posts:
1,525
  • CliveG is offline
#8
Quote:
Originally Posted by OceanTragic View Post Agree with you Clive, it's hard to believe the way it is happening when you come from elsewhere. Very sad indeed.

Did you stay in Hampi then or elsewhere?


(P.S. Pompey 1 - Saints 1 yesterday, and not a single arrest for fighting!)
Hi,
We stayed at the Gopi Guest House - the one across the road from their restaurant.
No fighting? Whats's going wrong with Pompey supporters?
#9 Dec 20th, 2011, 23:40
Join Date:
Sep 2008
Location:
Southampton, UK
Posts:
2,717
  • OceanTragic is offline
#9
Quote:
Originally Posted by CliveG View Post Hi,
We stayed at the Gopi Guest House - the one across the road from their restaurant.
We ate there loads, pretty good food I thought. Had some good chats with the restaurant manager there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CliveG View Post No fighting? Whats's going wrong with Pompey supporters?
They had no to fight with; the Saints fans had to take a coach there to get a ticket and the tickets were only handed to them when the coaches arrived at Fratton. Seemed a bit overkill but there were no crowd problems so this'll be the way it stays.
#10 Dec 20th, 2011, 23:59
Join Date:
Apr 2011
Location:
Netherlands
Posts:
1,957
  • Klompen is offline
#10
Clive there were rumblings of this when I was last there and that was 8 years ago...
The pressure on space and jobs leads to this kind of thing.

Speaking of food I had a lovely Thali on the main market, spoilt somewhat by a guy spraying bug killers from a contraption on the back of his bicycle. Didn't have a appetite after that.
The kids thought it was great though, as they followed his vapor trail down the road screaming with laughter.
#11 Dec 21st, 2011, 09:25
Join Date:
Sep 2006
Location:
PORTSMOUTH U.K.
Posts:
1,525
  • CliveG is offline
#11
Quote:
Originally Posted by OceanTragic View Post We ate there loads, pretty good food I thought. Had some good chats with the restaurant manager there.


They had no to fight with; the Saints fans had to take a coach the are to get a ticket and the tickets were only handed to them when the coaches arrived at Fratton. Seemed a bit overkill but there were no crowd problems so this'll be the way it stays.
Yes the manager and his assistant were very friendly towards us and they do make a very good expresso coffee along with the food.

Seems like a good scheme about tickets - at least I can be assured my house will still be there when I return in Feb as I live not far from Fratton!
#12 Dec 21st, 2011, 09:30
Join Date:
Sep 2006
Location:
PORTSMOUTH U.K.
Posts:
1,525
  • CliveG is offline
#12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Klompen View Post Clive there were rumblings of this when I was last there and that was 8 years ago...
The pressure on space and jobs leads to this kind of thing.

Speaking of food I had a lovely Thali on the main market, spoilt somewhat by a guy spraying bug killers from a contraption on the back of his bicycle. Didn't have a appetite after that.
The kids thought it was great though, as they followed his vapor trail down the road screaming with laughter.
I have no problem with the idea that something had to be done. It was the uncertainty, lack theof compassion and the lack of planning by the temple leaders and the court that I find hard to accept.

I would have been worried about the toxicity of the bug killer used back then.


Posting Rules

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Forum Rules»
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.3.2
© IndiaMike.com 2014
Page Load Success