By: Sushil Singh Charak
Jammu: The Department of Tourism, in collaboration with the District Administration Samba and the Jammu Heritage Walk, organized a mega event on Sunday, the Purmandal Utterbeni Heritage Walk, to connect the youth with the rich cultural heritage of Purmandal also known as Chota Kashi on the river bank of Devika.
The event witnessed the participation of more than 200 enthusiastic locals, prominent citizens, and PRI members.
The Heritage Walk was flagged off by the District Development Council Chairman Keshav Dutt Sharma, Deputy Commissioner Abhishek Sharma, Joint Director Tourism Sunaina Sharma, and DDC member Avtar Singh, in the presence of local Sarpanchs and prominent personalities.
The participants visited several ancient temples, including the Umapati temple, Radha Krishna Temple (Gadhadhar ji Temple), Adhmukteshwar, and Ranbhishwersingh Temple, which have a historic relevance and cultural importance in the region. These temples are based on Shaivism and Vaishnavism Sanatana Dharma.
During the walk, the participants were informed by Ananya Salhotra, founder of the Jammu Heritage walks about the fresco paintings, architecture of temples, traditional routes, the origin of Gupta Ganga Devika River, and mentions of ancient scriptures. Also, the participants enjoyed traditional Dogra cuisine for lunch at Kabir Mandir which was arranged by the tourism department.
DDC Chairman Keshav Dutt Sharma said that connecting the youth with our heritage is essential to instil pride in them for our rich cultural heritage.
During the Purmandal Utterbeni Heritage Walk, the Deputy Commissioner Samba Abhishek Sharma addressed the participants and emphasized the importance of preserving our cultural heritage and passing it down to future generations. He urged the youth to take an active interest in their history and heritage, and to be proud of their roots.
He expressed his gratitude to the Department of Tourism, the Heritage Walk Society, and all the participants for making the event a grand success. He also highlighted the importance of involving the local community in the heritage and that interventions like this have a potential not only to generate awareness but also generate employment.
The Joint Director tourism Jammu Sunaina Sharma informed that the tourism department is committed to promote the rich cultural heritage and historical importance of the region under the guidance of Secretary Tourism, Dr. Syed Abid Rasheed Shah and Director Tourism Jammu Vivekanand Rai, who have also been actively working towards promoting tourism in the region and creating opportunities for the locals to showcase their culture and heritage to the world.
One participant Ananya Sharma, a student from Jammu University, expressed her appreciation for the informative and engaging tour of the temples, adding that she had learned a lot about the region’s cultural and religious significance. Another participant, Vishal Singh, a local resident, commended the organizers for the well-planned event and hoped that more such initiatives would be taken to promote the region’s heritage and tourism potential.
Overall, the participants were thrilled to be a part of the heritage walk and expressed their gratitude to the organizers especially the tourism department J&K and District Administration Samba.