MOHD MAJID MALIK
The historical Bhaderwah Fort is now in shambles and have become eyesores and is in a state of total neglect. Fort is crying for attention from the government. There seems to be no political will in the government to protect this historical monument from becoming history.
Yet when it comes to living memory that we inherit by way of heritage; we simply turn a blind eye and let it be ravaged.
Bhaderwah, has a rich heritage but untapped tourism potential despite having a rich historical past, the town, which was the seat of the Chamba rulers in past, has remained neglected when it comes to making it an independent tourist destination, an often repeated slogan of successive governments.
The first impression every one got after visiting Bhaderwah fort which is heritage was that the authorities which also includes state government and tourism department have simply forgot to take care of this historic place. Bhaderwah fort is only 3 KM away from main Bhaderwah town. The top view of the fort gives a magnificent view of the whole Bhaderwah valley and is now nothing but the ancient ruins filled with some snakes and other little creatures.Built in 1733 by Maharaja Phar Chand, the fort was converted into a jail in 1919 to house the freedom fighters but now this heritage is vanishing . This is a great heritage site of whole Chenab valley and it can become a major attraction for the tourists. The archaeological department is not doing its work in Bhaderwah – rich in heritage, but poor in tapping tourism potential. Bhaderwah , also knows as Switzerland of India , has a rich heritage but untapped tourism potential.For over a decade nothing has been done by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), State Archaeology and Museums Department, the Tourism and Culture Department to conserve and protect this monument and heritage .Bhaderwah , there is no major museum or place of historical importance which has been developed.The monument is in a bad shape compared to what it was a few decades ago.