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Army to promote white-water rafting in Arunachal rivers

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By EMN Updated: Oct 12, 2014 11:29 pm
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AGENCIES
Itanagar, October 12

[dropcap]T[/dropcap]HE army has identified mountain rivers in Arunachal Pradesh as potential attraction for adventure tourists, especially among those interested in white-water rafting in the Siang, as the Brahmaputra is known as in the hill state that shares international boundary with China.
While a joint team of the Indian Army and Bangladesh Army, conducted a white-water rafting expedition on the Siyom river in West Siang district last week, more such expeditions are in the pipeline, official sources said. The state government has already started selling the Siang as a major white-water rafting destination, while three other routes have been also opened up, these being on the Kameng (Seppa-Bhalukpong), Subansiri (Taliha-North of Daporijo) and Dibang (Anini-Assam border).
The army in fact has set up its own Army Adventure Node Centre under the aegis of 5 Mountain Brigade at Aalo, the West Siang district headquarters, where the joint Indian and Bangladesh Army team, which undertook a week-long pre-expedition training before setting out on its 85-km rafting stretching over three days. “It was the first time that the army has explored the Siyom river, and the joint India-Bangladesh expedition was a wonderful way of launching it,” said Defence PRO Lt Col Suneet Newton. “Expeditions on the Brahmaputra right from the point where it enters India in Arunachal Pradesh to Dhubri, where it flows out to Bangladesh, are on the cards,” he added.
The Siyom, which is also known as the Yomgo and happens to be the largest river in the district, originates in Tibet, enters India by meandering through steep gorges on the India-China border at an elevation of about 3700 metres, to join the Siang (Brahmaputra) at Pangin, about 30 kms road distance from Aalo. “The army has done several expeditions on the Siang, Kameng and some other rivers, but last week’s was an international expedition that will carry the message further,” Lt Col Newton said.
Chief minister Nabam Tuki, whose government has identified tourism as a major economic activity for the ecologically fragile yet richest in biodiversity state, says Arunachal Pradesh is fast emerging as a major tourist destination not only within India but also across the globe.
“Aptly referred to as ‘the Paradise Unexplored’, Arunachal Pradesh has indeed emerged as a major destination of the world. While the breath-taking beauty makes one feel perfectly harmonious with nature, the religious sites provide the spiritual respite of a lifetime. But what is most important is that it is also a treasure house for adventure seekers-mountaineering, trekking, white-water rafting and angling. You name it, we have it all here,” chief minister Tuki said.

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By EMN Updated: Oct 12, 2014 11:29:12 pm