Monday, May 20, 2013

Gobind Sagar



   This vast reservoir lies in the district of Bilaspur and Una. The town of Bilaspur is 83 km from the railway station of Anandpur Sahib.

   The Gobind Sagar over the river Sutlej is the result of the huge hydel dam of Bhakra and is named in honour of Gobind Singh the tenth Sikh Guru. One of the world’s highest gravity dams, the Bhakra rises 225.5 m above its lowest foundations. Under the supervision of the famous American dam builder, Harvey Slocum, work began in 1955 and was completed in 1962. Incidently, Slocum had no formal training as an engineer, but his conceptions and designs had been proven successful. To maintain the level of water, the flow of the river Beas was also channeled to the Gobind Sagar by the Beas-Sutlej Link which was completed in 1976. Today, this dam feeds electricity and water to several states of north India. Its reservoir – the Gobind Sagar is 90 km long and encompasses an area of approximately 170 sq km.

   As far back as 1962, the Gobind Sagar was declared a ‘Water Fowl Refuge’ and even today, hosts a variety of water and shore birds, fishing is a regular activity and fifty-one species and sub-species have been recorded. The varieties found, include Labeo dero, Tor putitora,mystus seenghala and mirror carp and allied species. Fishing licences may be obtained from the Department of Fisheries at Bilaspur.

   Water sports are available – as are speed – boat and ferry rides. In October and November, when the water level of the reservoir is at its peak, a series of regattas are also organized by the Department of Tourism and Civil Aviation. Water-skiing, sailing, kayaking and water-scooter racing become available at this time.

Other Attractions

   Connected by a rope-way, the shrine of Naina Devi overlooks the Gobind Sagar. The adjoining wildlife sanctuary holds sambhar, wild boar, barking deer and red jungle fowl. Several old forts and the towns of Swarghat and Bilaspur are near the Gobind Sagar. Bilaspur has a large sports complex. The mirror carp hatchery is also accessible from the lake.

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