History & Culture

Unravelling Chinese link can boost tourism

UDHAGAMANDALAM

Very few hill areas can boast so many foreign footprints as the Nilgiris. The European contribution is well known. But the work some Chinese prisoners did to make the hill station what it is today lies buried under the sands of time.

The first European to visit and write about the Nilgiris was a Portuguese in 1604. The British opened the district to the outside world and laid the foundation for a modern Nilgiris in 1820. The Swiss then paved the way for a mountain railway. After Independence, the Canadians built hydro-electric projects.

The French set up the first public sector unit. There can be no better time to discover the Chinese connection than this year, India-China Year of Friendly Exchanges, Dharmalingam Venugopal, Director, Nilgiri Documentation Centre, said on Friday, World Heritage Day, calling for imaginative ways of exploiting the Nilgiris’ historical and heritage links through public-private collaboration to boost tourism.

Full report here Hindu

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