Have you seen Jonathan Spollen? Missing in Rishikesh since February 3rd, 2012

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#1291 Apr 19th, 2012, 21:51
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#1291
The high season(October to March) for Rishikesh is now over. It appears that there has not been any sightings or forthcoming information about Jonathan for several days/weeks now & time fades the memory/confidence.

The majority of travelers who were there in February have most likely moved on by now. The phone calling, poster campaign et al has been as thorough as can be so far ... but at this point the search needs a 'major' shot in the arm with a feature newspaper story &/or TV article.

To date I have only come across two small articles in Indian Newspapers - Here & Here. That's woefully inadequate I'm afraid - especially for a young foreign professional gone missing & who was wishing to return home ASAP & who had previously excellent communications with family and friends. You'd think this happened ever day by the ho hum media attention.

The national media coverage has got to get better ....right now! I'm sure there are several Indian reporters/journos who are monitoring this thread/site. Someone please step up to the plate on this!
We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time. ~
T. S. Eliot

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#1292 Apr 19th, 2012, 22:26
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#1292
Could the Capt. contact these places, to see if they want to put a poster up or spread them around or know anything else? They're just some places I happened to stay at or talk to in early 2010; one thing is some of them are listed in Lonely Planet (the 2007 edition), usually at the budget end, so this may always attract travelers. A few I could email myself, but I reckon the Capt. has the standard mail and approach at his fingertips.

Ramnagar: Hotel Anand, tel. 05947-254385. (Don't get me started on this place btw, anyway it's irrelevant here. It is or was in LP as the best -- ha! -- low-budget choice.)
(New) Everest Hotel, 252926/9837214186/9837474787, hotelneweverest at gmail.com.

Nainital: Hotel Vikrant, 9412035967/05942-235031.

Ranikhet: Hotel Rajdeep, 05966-220017.
The Ranikhet Grand, 221144, ranikhetgrand at gmail.com. Not necessarily a traveler's hangout I don't think (despite the grand, it's not high-end either. Let's say maybe lower medium to medium-budget), but, give it a shot. Has a restaurant if I recall.

Almora: That hotel I mentioned that has a restaurant that I suspect may well be popular in season must have probably been either the:
Hotel Konark, 05962-231217
or Hotel Shikhar, 230253.
That Sikh restaurant I mentioned and seemingly attracting foreign travelers may well have been Soni Restaurant, er, no number listed in LP I see now, but so it is in there. It's on The Mall there.

Well, that's my Uttarakhand stuff. It's always a long shot, of course, but as we say here, never a shot is always a miss.
#1293 Apr 19th, 2012, 22:54
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#1293
Wrt above post

Called
Hotel Anand Ramnagar, no Jonathan but guy unhelpful, probably fobbing me off.
(New) Everest Hotel Ramnagar, no J, have emailed anyway
Hotel Vikrant Nainital no J,
Hotel Rajdeep Ranikhet no J,
Hotel Konarak Almora, no J
Hotel Shikhar Almora no J
The Ranikhet Grand no J have emailed anyway
.
This is computer generated drivel. No signature is required.
#1294 Apr 19th, 2012, 23:03
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#1294
<cross-posted, Thanks so much Capt. You truly are a star But then we already knew that, didn't we Sorry for your experiences with the Anand, they truly are arseholes, aren't they. Suggest the place be boycotted. That New Everest Hotel in Ramnagar and so where I took my business instead looked to be just starting up at the time and so a little clumsy at how to deal with foreign customers, little overly nosy and so, but they were very friendly and the place had great potential, very nice rooms, and of course spic-and-span then since just opened, or redone or so. It still smelt of fresh lacquer. Higher low-budget to lower medium kind of place, I'd say. Let's see, in early 2010 then I paid Rs. 600/night, asking price 800, for really a nice and large double room to myself -- with indeed nice wooden finishings and stuff --, if cold for lack of heating, but then in mid-winter this was the case and at this end in pretty much all of these places, or you have to pay extra for a little electric heater that doesn't help much. You get plenty of nice and warm blankets and duvets though. Do note btw in many towns here or at least in Kumaon then, advertized rates seem to double or triple in season, so I guess April'ish until the monsoon starts.)

ps Tourist offices for these places, might never hurt to have a poster up there, as well:

Corbett Tiger Reserve, Reception Centre (this is in Ramnagar), tel. 05947-251489.
There's a second reception centre at Kotdwar on the park's western edge, 01382-224823.

Nainital, Uttarakhand Tourism Office, 05942-235337. I've found these to be friendly and helpful folks.

Ranikhet, UK T office, 05966-220227.

Almora, UK T office, 05962-230180.

It could of course pay again to dig through LP's entire Uttarakhand (and adjacent...) sections to contact all of the tourist offices listed. Maybe I'll look into it one of these days at least for Uttarakhand, am not currently up to it. Anyone feel like it, go right ahead.

State tourism department's details are listed at, er, well, there are full governmental lists online, the links I have for those are now handily broken, anyway I reckon it would remain to be seen if you could get them to spread the word and notably posters around all of their local offices.
Last edited by machadinha; Apr 20th, 2012 at 21:46.. Reason: edited
#1295 Apr 19th, 2012, 23:18
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#1295
If we want to cover all tourist offices in UKhand, the way to do it is to get a decision maker in their head office (Dehradun?) to mandate posters in all offices. Individual officers/clerks in local offices will probably not have the authority to do this, I think. Will try and call one or two of these tomorrow and post here if outcome is positive.
#1296 Apr 19th, 2012, 23:27
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#1296
Great, Capt., that sounds like just the right approach. I probably don't need to tell you this, but I think the official tourism department's website is here: http://www.gmvnl.com/.

ps When those people tell you "No J.," does that mean you couldn't get them to receive and display a poster? That had been my idea, I wouldn't expect Jonathan to have accidentally washed up there, at least of course the odds would be very slim.
Last edited by machadinha; Apr 19th, 2012 at 23:28.. Reason: edited
#1297 Apr 20th, 2012, 05:33
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#1297
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vee21 View Post Every time someone posts a thread no matter useful or not it keeps the thread in the public eye.
I'm a little relucant to say it here, with all the interest in this thread, but one can always go "bump" on a thread. Since you've now added a new response to the thread, it will be brought back to top, so has been "bumped" as web parlance has it. It's an acceptable method, but should be used with great reluctance, also for the following reasons (and unnecessary bumping will no doubt be seen as abuse, btw. Although it's an OK way to bring attention again to your unanswered thread, so long as you don't overdo it nor expect it to be answered within minutes, nor keep repeating it every so often. Maybe people just don't have an answer, or found your question misphrased, or obviously answered before with a little bit of searching):

It would be good for people to please NOT abuse this nor collectively do it all the time especially on a thread like this. It will just be annoying, make people lose interest, make the latest posts or pages irrelevant, and fill those involved -- and perhaps having email notification on to replies to the thread -- with hope something has been added when it hasn't.

Rely on some regulars to bump it sometimes when they feel it's going out of sight; they will. The mods can even bring a thread back to top, without adding any message, to "bump" it. I'm sure they will, at intervals, when they feel called to.

As time progresses and fewer reactions come in, the thread will appear less on top of the home page. That's a harsh reality, but it is so. Right now, it seems to be still well in members' focus. Maybe it's gone from being on top pretty much all of the time, to being there often, sometimes perhaps not for a day or so (so far rarely for over a day, I think, and usually far more frequently). That is still not bad. Besides, there are quite a few members now pointing to it in their signatures. All of that will lessen over time, I'm afraid to say. But for now, people are trying.

But so, er, *bump.*
Last edited by machadinha; Apr 20th, 2012 at 07:19.. Reason: edited
#1298 Apr 20th, 2012, 11:42
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#1298
Have called both KMVNL and GMVNL in Dehradun/Nainital with no concrete results. Have emailed them the poster with request to display across their centres in the region too.
#1299 Apr 20th, 2012, 15:42
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#1299
@capt
I really have to say that all your calling and emailing work is really, really great
#1300 Apr 20th, 2012, 21:43
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#1301 Apr 20th, 2012, 23:15
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#1302 Apr 21st, 2012, 01:35
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#1302
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Originally Posted by PeakXV View Post The national media coverage has got to get better ....right now! I'm sure there are several Indian reporters/journos who are monitoring this thread/site. Someone please step up to the plate on this!
English dailies might be a help Peak, Hindi and hill dailies would be preferable. But as you can't guarantee anything the odds on method is with a few bills. Anyhow not much most can do about that!

GMVN's generally are fully booked once yatra season begins in a few days time, with pilgrims, and the rates rise also. A shoddy sort of operation really. Still the weather at char dham locations and the higher interior is stormy and unpredictable. Rishi, Deharadoon and similar, almost plains locations are already very warm and some sadhu's can be seen barefoot on the roads heading North... movement of the people
#1303 Apr 21st, 2012, 04:27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paleface View Post English dailies might be a help Peak, Hindi and hill dailies would be preferable. But as you can't guarantee anything the odds on method is with a few bills. Anyhow not much most can do about that!
Are there not any current affair - investigative journalism oriented TV programs in India as of yet?
Shows like W5 & The Fifth Estate are top-rated investigative style programs in Canada each with their own army of topnotch reporters who can snoop around and ask the tougher questions.

What are the equivalent options in India for the same kind of stories?
#1304 Apr 21st, 2012, 12:50
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#1304
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeakXV View Post Are there not any current affair - investigative journalism oriented TV programs in India as of yet?
Well there are i suppose, and also on the Hindi channels, though couldn't say with any certitude about how to get something on any given programme?

My feeling is that David should give some input again, what with the fundraiser a few days back, and whether or not that will help in any newspaper placements alongside what he may envisage as the next co-ordinated push. Like i said, pilgrimage season is virtually upon us and with lots of movement in the hills it may be an opportune moment.. otherwise what we are basically left with is the few that know about this in situ, keeping their eyes open.
#1305 Apr 21st, 2012, 12:54
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#1305
I saw today on the FindSpollen twitter feed that yesterday was Jonathan's 29th birthday.

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Here's wishing that he enjoyed his birthday and will celebrate his next one with the people that love him.
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