Degraded Paradise

Himachal Pradesh sits at the foothills of the “world’s roof”, and a quick look around makes you feel like you’ve landed in Heaven. Its unique combination of high mountains, old forests, pristine rivers from the Himalayas, temperate climate, and smiling inhabitants makes the place peaceful and simply gorgeous.

Yet, as with the rest of the planet, Heaven shares the space with Hell. Everywhere, in the most remote places, you will find, amongst ravishing perfumes and landscapes, unmissable traces of progress, in the form of unpaid-for advertising to snack and beverage brands who won’t stop using plastic and aluminum packaging even in such places as HP where polythene bags are already banned (and replaced with ‘reusable’ polyester or polypropylene fabrics). With brands impunity comes degraded nutrition habits (the rise of obesity in India is following the same patterns as with other processed food consuming countries, who eat chemically flavored low-fat carcinogenic sweets.)

Why would people living in Paradise destroy it to satisfy their crave for snacks and packaged goods from the city?

A subtle degradation that comes with colonization. You may have heard of how Portugal destroyed the Northern flora after they imported eucalyptus trees from their colonies. As eucalyptus is draining a lot of water, it took over the local flora.

A similar situation happened in the Himalayas with this plant imported by the British to decorate their gardens, and that now turned wild and found everywhere in the region.

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